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Teen athletes accused of raping teammates with broom in anti-gay hazing

Teen athletes accused of raping teammates with broom in anti-gay hazing

Homophobic hazing has long been an issue in American schools | Pixabay

Four high school football players have allegedly raped teammates with a broom in a homophobic hazing.

The Damascus High School athletes, aged 15, are being charged as adults.

Police have charged the boys one count of first-degree rape, three counts of attempted rape and one count of conspiracy to commit rape.

Each of the students were released on $20,000 bond, according to court records, on Tuesday (27 November).

Court records identify a fifth teammate as one of the four victims. He is also being accused of helping to rape at least one other. Documents show he is being charged as a juvenile.

Football players raped with a broom in homophobic ‘hazing’ 

One of the alleged victims told police the suspects held him down, pulled his pants down and poked his buttocks with a broomstick before ‘the broomstick was inserted into his anus a few inches,’ prosecutors said.

Two of the victims said they were violently attacked. These two boys said they were able to fight off the assailants before they ‘got the broom,’ prosecutors said.

Another victim said the broomstick, which he described as a wooden handle with a ‘cut on the tip of it’ said he was ‘stabbed’ on the buttocks.

When the victim tried to fight the attack, the suspects told him it was ‘tradition,’ he told police.

A suspect allegedly told investigators the broom was a hazing ritual from ‘generations ago’, saying freshmen were targeted.

‘Astonishingly cruel’ 

‘Each defendant played a significant role in carrying out their plan to sexually assault the victims in this case,’ the state’s attorney Peter Feeney said in court, according to the Washington Post.

‘Whether it was pushing, punching, stomping, holding down, tackling or wielding the broom.

‘The crimes could only have been committed with the active participation of each defendant.’

He also called the action ‘astonishingly cruel.’

Montgomery County Public School District Superintendent Jack Smith said the district is cooperating with police and providing support for Damascus High School students.

‘Our thoughts are with the students, staff and all who have been affected,’ Smith said.

Hazing rooted in homophobia

Cyd Zeigler, writing on OutSports, says hazing often is rooted in homophobia.

‘It is another reminder of the incredible power homophobia has in youth sports, with athletes allegedly using forced sodomy as a way to demean and humiliate younger athletes. All of that allegedly designed to build stronger bonds between the players. Insanity.’

He added: ‘Hazing is a canard that must be abolished from American sports.

‘Any coach who allows any form of hazing on a team he coaches should be fired, and any athlete who engages in hazing should be expelled from sports.

‘There is no place for this behavior, often with roots in homophobia, in sports.’

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