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Students in 'broomstick' abuse case reach a plea deal

Three Pennsylvania high school athletes are given lesser charges after accosting another student with a broomstick in hazing ritual.
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Community Matters

The trio of 17-year-old male high schoolers accused of assaulting another male teenager with a broomstick in a ritual known as “No Gay Thursday” have reached a plea bargain.

The attack took place in October 2015, at Conestoga High School in Tredyffrin Township, Pennsylvania.

They assailants have been allowed to plead guilty to menacing, however their punishment is not known, reports Gay Star News.

The high school coach and other staff were let go after the incident.

 A joint statement made by Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan as well as representation for the accused have tried to make it seem that the boys' actions weren’t as forceful as they are being portrayed.

The statement alleges that the students, “‘briefly poked the victim with a broomstick in the leg.”

“The intent of the charged juveniles was to scare the victim and coerce him to cooperate with other team members in the joint cleanup of the locker room, and not to do the victim any physical harm.”

This description of the act is in direct contrast to the charges of assault, unlawful restraint, and terroristic threats of which they faced initially. 

They were never charged with a sex crime and Pennsylvania law says that only colleges can be charged with hazing.  

The victim was forced to have the upperclassmen’s genitals on his head, ordered to strip down to his underwear and scrub the locker room, he has since left the school.

The statement alleges that the five-foot-seven, 160-pound victim didn’t report the abuse to his father until March 2016, and then only after he was charged with a crime himself. 

“That’s over 400 pounds of senior holding down this freshman,” Hogan said in March 2016.

One student at the time said he knew about “No Gay Thursday” but thought it was a joke and knew nothing of the physical abuse that went on. 

The District Attorney says that the ritual has been in place for the past three years,

He thinks it was a lack of adult supervision and the locker room hazing was the “worst-kept secret in the world.”