Jorelys Rivera, 7, disappeared Dec. 2 at the River Ridge apartment complex in Canton while at the playground. Her body was found days later in a trash bin. A worker at the complex admitted to killing the girl, then took his own life.
Joselinne Rivera has sued the Canton apartment complex where her daughter was killed, claiming it failed to perform a substantial background check of the maintenance man who admitted to killing the 7-year-old girl.
The mother of a murdered 7-year-old girl has sued the Cherokee County apartment complex where her family lived, saying it hired a maintenance man with a history of crimes against children who later murdered her daughter.
Ryan Brunn confessed to killing Jorelys Rivera days after her body was found in a trash compactor at the River Ridge at Canton apartment complex.
In a lawsuit filed Thursday in Fulton County State Court, Joselinne Rivera, Jorelys' mother, says the complex failed to do an adequate background check on Brunn. Despite residents' complaints about Brunn lingering at the complex playground watching children, the complex retained the 20-year-old, the suit contends.
A spokesman for the complex's management firm, McCormack Baran Salazar, on Monday referred inquires about the suit to a statement it issued Dec. 7, the day Brunn was arrested.
"It is our policy that all residents and all employees undergo and clear criminal background checks, including screens for sex offender registries, prior to employment or residence approval," the management firm said.
Investigators have previously said that Brunn had no criminal history as an adult. But in a videotaped interview with GBI agents moments after being sentenced, Brunn admitted he had molested two girls while babysitting years earlier.
Jorelys was last seen alive Dec. 2 while at the playground, located across from the apartment where she lived with her mother and two younger sisters. She was reported missing later that evening.
Around midday Dec. 5, the girl's body was found inside a trash compactor. Investigators determined she had been sexually assaulted and beaten to death.
Brunn was arrested two days later and charged with the girl's killing, a crime he later confessed to in order to avoid the death penalty. But Brunn served only hours of his life sentence before committing suicide, hanging himself with his prison-issued sweatshirt.
Joselinne Rivera's lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages and requests a jury trial, also contends that the complex should have informed her that registered sex offenders were among the complex's residents. The Rivera family no longer lives in the complex, attorney Lloyd Bell told the AJC.