Authorities are recommending charges against eight members of a high school baseball team in Florida for a series of alleged hazing incidents during a tournament earlier this year.
Eight players from the Cooper City High School baseball team could face charges of simple battery, false imprisonment and sexual battery in connection to the alleged hazing during the tournament in Altamonte Springs in March, according to Altamonte Police Department Officer Evelyn Estevez.
Estevez told The Post that the charges were recommended Wednesday to the State Attorney’s Office in Seminole County. The investigation remains open, she said.
A player on the team told his mother that he and two other teammates were hazed by several players, including five who came into his room and tried to pull down his underwear before he was able to fight them off, according to an incident report from the Broward County Sheriff’s Office.
The same group of players held down another teammate during the team’s weeklong stay at an Embassy Suites in Altamonte Springs, where they managed to “put their fingers up his butt,” the police report reads.
The victim also alleges that he heard about – but did not see – another incident during which the unidentified group of players inserted a Gatorade bottle into another player’s rectum.
When another player told the team’s coach about the alleged abuse, he replied, according to the report: “It’s just baseball, keep it to yourself.”
Chris Delgado, the team’s coach at the time, was never publicly identified as being involved, but he has since left the school, WPLG reports. Delgado was not a district employee, but received a stipend as coach of Cooper City’s baseball team, Broward County Public Schools spokeswoman Tracy Clark told the Sun Sentinel in June.
Clark could not be immediately reached for comment on Monday.
Meanwhile, the boy’s mother reported the alleged hazing to Cooper City High School officials in June. The three allegedly victimized teammates then began getting threatening messages once school officials started taking statements from other players, according to the report obtained by The Post.
“[D]on’t act like a b—h,” one message read.
The victim who reported the alleged hazing in June told authorities that he had not been back to school since the tournament in late March. The boy’s mother said she will send him to another school next year, according to the report.