Teenaged Football Player Sexually Assaulted By Allegedly Racist Teammates With Hanger

John R.K. Howard

A family is suing Dietrich High School in Idaho for $10 million after their son was allegedly raped by his teammates in a racially motived assault

The lawsuit says that on Oct. 23, one of the victim’s teammates lured him into a hug. Then, three white male students restrained their 18-year-old black teammate so a coat hanger could be inserted into his rectum. One of the assailants kicked the coat hanger multiple times and sent the victim to the hospital. The attack occurred inside the high school, in the locker room after football practice. 

“I screamed,” the victim testified during a preliminary hearing, according to magicvalley.com. “I was pretty upset. I felt really bad. A little bit betrayed and confused at the same time. It was terrible — a pain I’ve never felt.”

18-year-old John R.K. Howard of Keller, Texas, is one of three teens charged. The second accused male, Tanner Ward, 17, will also be charged as an adult. The third will be charged as a juvenile as he’s 16-years-old. His case is sealed and his name won’t be released. He’s not currently in custody. Howard and accomplice Ward could face life in prison. 

The 16-year-old is reportedly friends with the victim. Lincoln County Judge Mark A. Ingram has signed a no-contact order into effect. 

“Due to the seriousness of the crime alleged, I see no reason why a no-contact order shouldn’t be imposed,” Ingram said. “If the friendship is as strong as you say it is, it will survive a no-contact order.”

The alleged attack occurred after months of racial abuse against the teen. He was regularly taunted by other members of the football team with racial slurs. The lawsuit claims that coaches and teachers never attempted to prevent the abuse or bullying. 

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