March 5, 2009

criminal law

Sources: http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/crime_krqe_santa_fe_accused_hazing_leader_denies_guilt_200902122348 ; http://espn.go.com/otl/hazing/monday.html ; http://espn.go.com/otl/hazing/list.html ; http://www.news-bulletin.com/sports/86676-02-11-09.html

It would seem that hazing is alive and well in sports despite policies in place to the contrary.

The court in the infamous Robertson High School American Football hazing case has now arraigned defendants ahead of a full trial in June / August. The five defendants are charged with multiple counts of rape, attempted rape and kidnapping after trying to rape six younger teammates with a broomstick at a pre-season training camp. They have all pleaded not guilty. Although the state has not decided whether to press criminal charges against the football coaching staff, they have all resigned from their posts.

For a full description of the incident, click this news report: http://nbcsports.msnbc.com/id/26856453/

The criminal charges against the players themselves are in stark contrast to another high-profile hazing incident involving the Downie-Aliu rookie initiation and subsequent fight. Although each of the players involved were suspended and the Windsor Spitfires hit with a $35,000 fine, it was actually Moe Mantha (the Windsor Spitfires general manager & head coach) who was hit the hardest (40 suspended games as coach, the entire season as GM) because he accepted that the buck ultimately stopped with him.

For a full description of the incident, click this news report: http://sports.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090220.wspt-maki-col-20/GSStory/GlobeSportsHockey/?page=rss&id=RTGAM.20090220.wspt-maki-col-20

The problem is, what actually counts as hazing? If you read the research from Alfred University, they suggest that it can be defined as, “Any activity expected of someone joining the group that humiliates, degrades, abuses or endangers, regardless of the person’s willingness to participate. This does not include activities such as rookies carrying the balls, team parties with community games, or going out with your teammates, unless an atmosphere of humiliation, abuse or danger arises.”


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About Kris

Associate Professor in Sports Law, Staffordshire University; British Gymnastics Senior Coach

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One Comment on “Hazing”

  1. HAZEM Says:

    Very Nice Blog.. with my best wishes.



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