NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — An entire football team has been punished for protecting the ringleaders of an alleged hazing incident. Students as young as 13 years old were allegedly pummeled by older students.
An alleged hazing incident cost Isaac E. Young Middle School the end of its football season this year. The team was told three weeks ago. Most parents are just finding out now.
“Oh my god! I am truly shocked,” parent Shauna Conner said.
Sources told CBS 2’s Lou Young the incident involved eighth graders accosting the underclassmen members of the football team, lining them up along the walls of the locker room, harassing, heckling, and pulling at their clothes in a noisy violent rite of passage. A parent complained, which eventually lead to a call to police. There were several suspensions but no arrests. The students apparently refused to finger the ringleaders, so the principal took additional action.
Doctor Anthony Bongo decided to cancel the final three games, forcing his school to forfeit against Ramapo, White Plains and New Rochelle. He met with some parents, but decided to keep it under wraps from the rest of the school.
“At least send home a letter to parents or a phone call or something,” Conner said, adding when asked if she felt like she was being left out of the loop, “Yeah, pretty much. You, you’re telling me the news.”
“They should’ve did a phone call or they should’ve did a letter home. Yes, it’s serious,” parent Laurie Rodriguez added.
A local website said the annual ritual even had its own theme song – “Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns ‘n Roses.
“It bothers me because they didn’t notify the parents. My granddaughter goes here,” Sharon Bocek said.
The mother of one student on the football team said she’s concerned about where the coaches were when the alleged hazing incident took place. Neither the principal nor the school superintendent had a comment.
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