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Three boys charged with sodomy in US high school 'hazing'

October 3, 2003

NEW YORK — A prosecutor charged three members of a New York high school football team on Thursday with sexually abusing other players at a training camp in Pennsylvania.

The charges followed a police and grand jury investigation into allegations that team members from Mepham High School in Long Island, New York, sodomized younger players with a broomstick, pine cones and golf balls during the August training at a camp near Philadelphia.

According to a press release from Mark Zimmer, US District Attorney for Wayne County in Pennsylvania, the three players, aged 15, 16, and 17 at the time of the alleged attacks, have been charged on 11 counts, including involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, aggravated assault and kidnapping.

For the moment, the case is being handled as a juvenile case, but Zimmer said he would make a decision "in the very near future" on the possibility of transferring the charges to an adult criminal court.

State police said the alleged victims were a 13-year-old and two 14-year-old boys.

It is not the first time that a "hazing," or initiation ritual at a high school has resulted in charges being filed.

In May, 15 students at a suburban Chicago high school, 12 of them girls, were charged with battery after showering a bunch of juniors with feces, blood, urine and trash in lieu of the traditional eggs and flour.

One girl needed 10 stitches to her head and another suffered a broken ankle. –Sapa-AFP

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