Over the course of five days, their sons were brutally sodomized by their teammates. Broomsticks dipped in mineral ice, a kind of liquid heat, golf balls, pine cones and toothbrushes, were all pushed into the boy’s rectums. All the while, older players watched and laughed.
“They had bags of ice and they were bashing it all over his body until the bags broke. They bashed him in his head, over his back, his legs, his arms,” recalls Patty, who says her son was assaulted at least 3-4 times a day.
Three varsity players were held responsible. Tom Diasparra, 15, Ken Carney, and a 17-year-old team captain, Phil Sophia, pleaded guilty.
“These boys were like 6 feet 2 inches and 6 feet 4 inches, and roughly 250 lbs. It’s, like, they’re monsters,” says Patty.
A grand jury report later described how they used duct tape to pull off their children’s pubic hair, how they forced them and another boy they sodomized to kick each other in the groin, and then threatened to beat and kill all of them if they told anybody.
...When the school board canceled the football season and suspended the coaches, the community actually split -- between those who supported the victims’ families, and those who wanted to save the coaches and the season.
A football captain begged for the season to be reinstated, and his pleas were met with thunderous applause.
“Standing up and giving a 'rah, rah' when my son and the other boys are hurting in this way is so disrespectful. It was horrible. It devastated us. I cried,” says Carol, who asked her friend, Jim Rullo, to make a speech on her behalf.
Rullo, now a community activist for change in his school district, says he received numerous letters and phone calls, including one that said that he and his family would die.