DEDHAM (CBS) – Dedham police are looking into allegations of hazing involving players on the high school’s football team, a source tells WBZ-TV, and there is the possibility of criminal charges.
Sources tell WBZ-TV the incident was sexual in nature and that one or two upper classmen assaulted a freshman in the locker room.
It’s still not clear yet what happened, but schools superintendent June Doe confirmed several students were involved and that there was an “alleged violation of the district’s anti-hazing policy” and that they’re investigating.
WBZ News Radio Lana Jones reports
After school today, students said they were aware something had happened Friday night, but they thought it was innocent.
“I know those guys, and they were just horsing around,” said one girl. Her friend added, “if they knew it was hazing, they wouldn’t have done it.”
School officials declined an on-camera interview and referred to a statement released Wednesday morning.
“It is painful to report that the investigation has produced information for school administrators to conclude that there was a violation of the policies,” Doe said in a statement issued Wednesday morning.
“We can appreciate that the community has a legitimate interest in the outcomes for the violations of these policies; however, school officials are prohibited by federal and state laws from commenting on or disclosing information about individual student discipline.”
“In the matter of a violation of anti-bullying or anti-hazing policies, the school district acts swiftly to investigate and our policies permit a range of disciplinary actions which include suspension and expulsion from school.”
Laura Scace’s son is a freshman on the team. He told her about the incident when he got home from his game.
“He thought there was something kind of off about it,” she said. “It started all fun and games but then it was almost like a hazing gone bad.”
At least one student has reportedly been suspended and two others have been temporarily removed from the team while authorities investigate.
Another freshman football player tells WBZ-TV he heard the commotion as he was entering the locker room after the football game. He admits things got out of hand, but says hazing isn’t a regular occurrence and he doesn’t think the older players meant any harm. “It’s not a problem here,” he said. “I think some kid was just joking around and it kind of got taken seriously by a lot of people.”
WBZ-TV’s Bill Shields and Lauren Leamanczyk contributed to this report