7 High School Football Players Charged in Hazing Case

New Jersey teens face sex-crime charges
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 11, 2014 2:39 PM CDT
7 High School Football Players Charged in Hazing Case
Banners for state championships for the Sayreville War Memorial High School football team are lined up on a sign along Main Street in Sayreville, N.J.   (Julio Cortez)

Seven high school students face sex-crime charges amid a hazing investigation that canceled a New Jersey football team's season. Six of the seven students, ranging in age from 15 to 17, were arrested last night in the assaults at regional football power Sayreville War Memorial High School. The seventh was being sought. Authorities did not specify the connection of the suspects or alleged victims to the football program, but they previously said they were investigating hazing allegations connected to the team. In a statement on the arrests, Superintendent Richard Labbe said the district will continue to cooperate with prosecutors' investigation.

The arrests came four days after Labbe announced he was canceling the rest of the football team's season after the prosecutor's office substantiated allegations of hazing. The suspects attacked four students on separate occasions between Sept. 19 and Sept. 29, authorities said. Their investigation found that the suspects held other teens against their will and touched them in a sexual manner. One of the victims was kicked during an attack, authorities said. Three of the students were charged with aggravated sexual assault, criminal restraint, hazing, and other crimes for an act of sexual penetration upon one of the alleged victims. The four other students were charged with aggravated criminal sexual contact and other crimes. (Read more Sayreville stories.)

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