A high school in Pennsylvania has canceled the football season due to hazing incidents involving the team.
Middletown Area School District Superintendent Dr. Chelton Hunter sent a letter (h/t TMZ Sports) informing parents and guardians of the “disturbing and upsetting” video that surfaced earlier this month.
Mobile phone footage taken by the players shows students shackling two teammates and using a gun for muscle therapy “to poke the buttocks of students lying on the ground.” They were fully clothed and did not seem to have been physically penetrated.
All the players mentioned in the video were excluded from the team, and head coach Scott Acree resigned.
Two days later, Hunter sent another email on Wednesday after receiving additional video from another incident.
“Unfortunately, this video demonstrates that this hazing was much more widespread and involved many more students than we previously knew,” Hunter wrote. “In light of this, we have decided to cancel the 2022 football season. I know that this decision will be met with different opinions and emotions and will affect many students and families.”
Hunter said the school has sent the video to law enforcement, and they are all pursuing alternative plans for cheerleaders and band members affected by the cancellation of the football season.
“The hazing that took place in our facilities with this team is reprehensible,” Hunter said. “This simply cannot be and will not be allowed. We know that we have to work on the culture of this team, educate our students about hazing and implement programs that will help us ensure that such an atmosphere will never be allowed into our school premises.