Southampton High School’s varsity football team had to forfeit its last regular-season game last week—apparently because of an incident in the locker room in which two boys held down a third player and pretended to perform a sex act on him.
Although the school district has not specified the nature of the incident, a report by the Southampton Village Police on October 30 confirms what some have suggested was a hazing incident.
According to the report, the incident took place following Mariner football practice on October 30. The report states that two boys, who have not been identified, forcibly held down a third player and rubbed against him in a sexual manner. All subjects were fully clothed during the incident, the report states.
This week, Superintendent Dr. Scott Farina said the incident is under investigation, but he would not classify the event as hazing. He added that the district is actively working with the entire athletic department to ensure that future incidents do not happen.
“We immediately investigated the situation and took the appropriate measures, as far as accountability,” he said. “We are proactively making sure that our locker rooms are safe and that all of our students are treated with dignity.”
Dr. Farina also said that district protocols for locker room supervision are under review. He would not comment on the possibility of student or staff suspensions.
Last week, Southampton High School Principal Brian Zahn said of the forfeit: “What I can tell you is there was an incident reported to us that we are investigating and following up on. Because of the nature of our investigation, we felt it best that we just forfeit that game.”
The district’s website indicates that the district cannot provide details, but does say, “We are investigating and have taken preliminary action on an incident that was brought to our attention Thursday regarding the varsity football program. As a result of our preliminary actions, we were not able to field a complete team for last night’s final game of the season.
“As a district we expect both students and staff to uphold high moral standards and exhibit positive character traits both on and off the field,” the statement continues, adding that the investigation is pending.
Neither the incident nor the forfeit was mentioned at Tuesday night’s Southampton School Board of Education meeting.