On September 20th, 2022, 10 Middletown Area High School football players were charged in connection to hazing allegations. Two of the players were charged with attempted sexual assault.
According to the police, three students were sexually assaulted last month in the turf room when they were by themselves. The assault was recorded on video and the video was posted to the Internet.
The Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office did a month-long investigation into the allegations. Dauphin County detectives talked to about 80 people and found out six players were targeted for sexualized hazing. These players are between the ages of 14 and 17, while the perpetrators are between 16 and 17 years old.
Videos of hazing were posted on social media on August 12. The videos showed the victims being held down while the perpetrators pressed a muscle therapy gun and another piece of equipment over their clothes against their buttocks. The victims screamed in the video. The incident happened on August 11 at a time when there were no adults around.
The investigation found there were three other incidents within the last 12 months. This includes one incident at someone’s home.
Detectives are looking into whether hazing happened at a football camp over the summer – six players may have been targeted.
All the assaults were perpetrated by the same three players. Two of them are being called the primary aggressors and they have been charged with:
- Criminal attempt to commit involuntary deviate sexual assault
- Indecent assault
- Unlawful restraint
- Simple assault
The third perpetrator was charged with unlawful restraint, simple assault and hazing. The attempted sexual assault charges are felonies.
The hazing allegations resulted in the head football coach resigning and the district canceling the season.
At least seven students have been expelled from Middletown Area High School over the hazing incidents.
Has Your Loved One Been a Victim of Hazing? Contact Schmidt Kramer
Some people say “boys will be boys” when they hear about hazing or that hazing is just a tradition, but this is not true. Hazing is a form of abuse, and sometimes it includes sexual abuse. The physical and emotional damage from hazing can be severe and long-lasting.
While perpetrators can be criminally charged, there are also civil claims that can be brought against schools and their employees for failing to prevent hazing on campus. Minors who were victims of sexual abuse have the right to recover compensation for their pain and suffering under state law.
Our Harrisburg sexual abuse and sexual assault lawyers offer a free consultation to discuss your situation.
If your child has been a victim of hazing, call Schmidt Kramer: (717) 727-1837.