Link to Owner Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr.



The wrongful death lawsuit filed against the Woodburn School District by a local parent has been dismissed.

Carmen Melara-Robles filed the $1.3 million suit in summer 2015, in connection with the October 2014 death of her adopted son, Juan Carlos Robles, an autistic 13-year-old middle school student who was killed by a train after leaving a soccer practice unaccompanied.

The suit also named Nabor Piña as a defendant, alleging his actions on Oct. 21, 2014, were “a substantial factor” in Juan Robles’ death. Piña is a seventh-grade teacher at French Prairie Middle School, where Juan Robles was a student, and was his coach on the boys soccer team.

School district officials said they could not comment on the settlement itself, as it has been sealed.

“The district is pleased that the matter has been resolved,” Casey Woolley, director of human resources, said in an email.

Calls to Melara-Robles’ attorney, Paul Ferder, of the Salem firm Ferder, Casebeer, French & Thompson LLP, were not immediately returned. The district was represented by Peter Mersereau, of Mersereau Shannon, LLP.

The case was dismissed with prejudice and without attorney fees or costs to the parties.

Lindsay Keefer covers small cities in northern Marion County. She can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 503-765-1193.

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