Nine high school students in Texas have been charged for allegedly sexually assaulting other students in sports hazing rituals.
Daily Mail reports that nine high school athletes involved in football, baseball, or basketball, have been accused of sexual assaulting other boys with foreign objects.
Police have not released details of the crimes, but one mother told Fox 29 that her son, as well as a number of other victims, had foreign objects forced into their rectums.
“Kids were holding them down in the locker rooms, there was a lookout at the door watching for coaches not to come,” the mother said. “They hold them down and stick various items up their rectum… including coke bottles, deodorant bottles, steel pipes, baseball bats and broomsticks.”
The mother says that she was unaware of what happened until he told her that he did not want to attend his football practice.
La Vernia police Chief Bruce Ritchley said that the hazing primarily involved the football team at La Vernia High School, but that the basketball and baseball teams were involved as well, to a lesser degree.
The allegations came to light when one student went to police to report that they had been sexually assaulted in the bathroom. After the first student came forward, two others followed.
“I’m frustrated,” a La Vernia parent, who wishes to remain unidentified, told Fox 29. “If these things are going on in the school, how do I know my child is safe going there?”
Police say that there were at least ten victims, all of whom were freshmen or sophomores.
Seven of the nine students arrested in connection with the sexual assault are juveniles. The juveniles have been released to their parents, while the adults arrested have been booked in the Wilson County Jail.
The suspects were sent for “forensic interviews” with the Children’s Alliance of South Texas, which confirmed that “crime had been committed,” Ritchley said.
Police have not specified the nature of the sexual assaults, or how many other students are currently under investigation. Ritchley said, however, that they expect more to be arrested and added that more victims have come forward.
The school has not decided whether the suspects will be accepted back to the school or be sent to another district.
Jose Moreno, La Vernia school superintendent, wrote on the school’s Facebook page,” The travesty of the events occurring at the La Vernia High School have crushed the spirit of our community.”
The superintendent added that the school’s administration will be “implementing additional protocols to provide students a clear path of communication to report, receive counseling and know that their voices will be hear while maintaining their privacy.”