By Anthony Caruso III
Posted: October 11th, 2014 at 2:57 am EST
In schools around the country, students are supposed to feel safe. In recent years, students no longer feel the same way as they once did with school shootings happening all the time and hazing incidents beginning to pop up a lot nowadays.
As six Sayreville High School football players were arrested on Friday night – a seventh player, who was charged, is still awaiting arrest – these hazing incidents are starting to become as bad as school shootings. Teenagers are victimized, and they likely take these incidents with them the rest of their lives.
Schools are starting to face these hazing problems head-on, and are taking all allegations seriously. At first, it was thought that the Sayreville football game with South Brunswick on October 3rd was canceled due to the school’s defensive coordinator Charles Garcia being arrested for being in possession of steroids, syringes, and testosterone on September 26th.
However, the Sayreville HS administration denied that, and said there were other things that caused the game – and now the rest of the season – to be canceled. Now, we all know that the real reason that the game and season was canceled was due to hazing incidents.
These Sayreville allegations come from incidents involving upperclassmen and freshman. In September, all the way across the country, there was another hazing incident.
While the Sayreville accusations come from upperclassmen allegedly sexually assaulting freshman in the locker rooms, the California case comes from an incident while the team was away at a hotel room in Utah. Reports from this incident say, “it is a hazing incident, where the victim and the players involved truly know what happened.”
An unnamed player from Ruben S. Ayala High School in Chino Hills, who was suspended from the incident, stated in a story on NBC Los Angeles on September 26th, the players were “horsing around.” However, as a result, the school took it more seriously, and there were 21 players suspended from the football team.
The 21 guys in question were suspended from one to five days, depending on how much each person was involved in the hazing incident, school officials told NBC Los Angeles. But here in New Jersey, at the moment, no Sayreville players have been suspended for their involvement in the big mess that is going on.
Plus, with their arrests, they are likely going to miss educational time for their actions. In addition, this could affect their long-term goals, as this could cause them to spend time in a juvenile detention center, or even possibly worse, being sent to jail for crimes as an adult. The charges will go on their record for the rest of their lives.
If they go to a detention center, or possibly jail, it would make colleges, who were recruiting them to second guess their decision to offer them a partial or full-ride to begin with.
Miles Hartsfield, a star Sayreville football player, has a scholarship for next season to play for the Penn State Nittany Lions in State College, Pennsylvania. However, with his arrest and allegations that he’s the main focus of the investigation, he could very likely lose the scholarship, as the school continues to monitor his involvement in this case.
That was also a concern for the students involved in the California case, as well. They might lose their scholarships, as well.
Hazing is not only happening at high schools. Unfortunately, it is also happening at some Middle Schools across the country.
This past July, three middle school football players allegedly hazed one of their teammates while he was working out. All four individuals attend Forrest School in Chapel Hill, Tennessee at the time of the incident.
These players, who argued it was a prank, were suspended from school. Two of the three culprits, who were seventh and eight graders, held the victim down. Once he was down, the third person pulled his pants down and put his private parts on the victim’s face.
“I think that there’s a lot of that goes on in schools all throughout the United States,” Marshall County Sheriff’s Dect. Jimmy Oliver said this summer while investigating this case. “Some of it gets reported, and some of it doesn’t.
“Even something that could be a joke, you know, could be real serious, and there’s consequences to that.”