ALBANY — The Albany Herald has learned that the Dougherty County School System Police Department and the Dougherty County Sheriff’s Office are conducting an investigation into an alleged hazing and harassment incident involving the Westover boys basketball team during The Leonard Hamilton Basketball Camp in Tallahassee. Fla., this past weekend.
According to a source close to the situation, a 16-year-old basketball player was “verbally harassed, bullied and beaten with pillows from Saturday to Sunday.” The harassment involved at least 13 members of the 53-person Westover contingent. The source said most of the harassment involved current Westover players, sources say.
Dallis Smith, Westover boys basketball coach, refused comment on the allegations. “I can’t comment because the case is still under investigation,” Smith said.
School Police Chief Troy Conley and Westover Principal William Chunn did not return calls seeking comment. School System Superintendent Butch Mosely said he was aware of the incident, but would not comment because of the ongoing investigation.
The source added that once the boy got home he informed his parents of the alleged abuse. The father reportedly called Mosely who contacted Smith. The basketball coach then called a team meeting to discuss the situation.
The alleged assailants then took to Twitter.
The Herald has obtained copies of the Tweets, one of which, posted by T.T.E. #14 read: “I swear to god if we get charged for this mess he gone have to catch this round.”
ThatDamnJP Tweeted: “@BallerAmbition_@_XDuke24 shiiiiiiid ain’t like he got in the game”
ThatDamnJP also Tweeted: “Maaannn this (racial slur deleted) dun went home and told his folks!”
The source added that no chaperones intervened in Tallahassee, and that there were only three on the trip. According to the source, DCSS policy requires one chaperone per 10 students, meaning that at least five chaperones should have been on the trip, and further alleging that 53 students made the trip instead of the board-approved 35.