School district reaches settlement with families of students who died after being hypnotized by principal

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NORTH PORT, Fla. (AP – Oct. 8, 2015) — The families of three North Port High School students who died after being hypnotized by former Principal George Kenney will receive $200,000 each from the Sarasota County School District under a settlement agreement unanimously approved by the School Board.

The Herald-Tribune reports that the agreement was approved Tuesday night.

The $600,000 settlement closes a bizarre, yearslong case that began after former North Port High School Principal Kenney admitted he hypnotized 16-year-old Wesley McKinley a day before the teenager committed suicide in April 2011.

A subsequent investigation found that Kenney hypnotized as many as 75 students, staff members and others from 2006 until McKinley’s death. One basketball player at the school said Kenney hypnotized him 30 to 40 times to improve his concentration.

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