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5 SUSPENDED OVER HAZING AT HILLCREST

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Five Hillcrest High School football players have been suspended in an apparent hazing incident during a team practice.

The five students, whose names and ages were not released, were placed on a 10-day suspension last week, following the Aug. 21 incident in the boys locker room, said Patty Dahl, spokeswoman for the Jordan School District.She would not discuss details of the incident while the school's investigation continues, but said, "there was some kind of inappropriate physical action; threatening action."

There were three victims, Dahl said. "As the incident was reported, the behavior was quite inappropriate and needed to be dealt with."

The incident happened on a Wednesday, officials learned about it on Thursday and the students were placed on suspension Friday.

Dahl said some officials don't consider this type of an incident an example of "hazing" unless it is ritualistic or pre-planned.

The five Hillcrest Huskies are top players on the school's football team and will be obviously absent from the starting lineup, Dahl said.

Hillcrest's first pre-season game is scheduled for 5 p.m. today at Copper Hills High School against the Grizzlies.

Lee Leslie, who coaches the Hillcrest Huskies, has not returned a reporter's phone calls this week.

Principal Dennis Hansen would not comment on the incident Friday

The students will appeal the suspension to the district's disciplinary board Sept. 4. Each student will individually present his case to the board and can supply his own witnesses and testimony. The board has four choices. It can exonerate each of the boys and return him to school. It can find the boy guilty but repentant and return him to school. It can return the student to school, but not back to Hillcrest, or it can expel the student altogether.

The Hillcrest hazing is the second in Wasatch Front schools this summer.

Two Roy High School senior football players were kicked off the team after a group of sophomores complained they were humiliated during a hazing incident at a football camp this summer.

The students were accused of holding down the sophomores while one of the boys sat naked on their faces or the back of their heads, principal Dave Vanden Bosch said. The school is investigating whether other football players were involved in the incident at a camp in Carbon County.

The Roy students apologized to the sophomores and their parents at a meeting.

"We have emphasized, to the best of our ability, that it is inappropriate to terrorize or frighten or harm anyone on the school grounds," Jordan's Dahl said Friday. "It is supposed to be a safe place. We do not take this kind of thing lightly."