Criminal charges are unlikely against members of the Hoffman Estates High School boys’ varsity basketball team accused of hazing fellow students earlier this year, police said Monday.
“The investigation at this point is going to be closed with no criminal charges pending,” Hoffman Estates police Sgt. Darin Felgenhauer said.
The official police report of the hazing won’t be released until later this week, he added.
Unlike the alleged hazing at Maine West High School, Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211 officials have said there was no accusation of sexual misconduct in Hoffman Estates. Instead, the hazing reportedly involved several players piling onto a targeted player and engaging in “grabbing horseplay, slapping, and hitting the targeted player in areas that included the buttocks and sometimes in the groin.”
The basketball players who were targeted were clothed at the time of the “initiation” and contact was made over the players’ clothing, according to an earlier statement by the district.
District 211 immediately notified the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services because of an initial allegation of sexual misconduct that later was determined unfounded, while a team of 15 school officials conducted interviews with all 14 players and the coach. Officials have said the hazing occurred off campus without the knowledge of coaches.
The Hoffman Estates High School basketball team was forced to forfeit three games as a result of the investigation.
Meanwhile, six juveniles from Maine West High School have been petitioned to court on misdemeanor battery charges stemming from claims of hazing in September, as well as an alleged attack during a summer soccer camp.
The Cook County state’s attorney’s office is investigating accusations of hazing at Maine West in Des Plaines going back to 2007, while the families of four current or former students have filed lawsuits against Maine Township High School District 207, Maine West, its administrators, coaches and staff.Copyright © 2013 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.