Six Hamilton High School football players have been arrested on suspicion of sexual assault, kidnapping and aggravated assault in connection with the hazing of current and former teammates, Chandler police announced Wednesday.
Police say the crimes occurred on the Hamilton High School campus over a span of 17 months and involved “multiple male juvenile victims.” The nature of the incidents wasn’t disclosed.
Chandler police Sgt. Daniel Mejia said only one of the suspects is an adult, and police have declined to name him.
All six are Hamilton High School students, but one goes to Chief Hill Learning Academy part time. Both schools are in the Chandler Unified School District.
The district issued this statement Wednesday afternoon: “The District has been cooperating with Chandler Police relative to hazing allegations involving students. Today, police arrested six students in association with the investigation. Chandler Police are in control of this matter, and the District cannot discuss details but has been instructed to defer all questions to the Chandler Police.”
Reached for comment on Wednesday, Chandler Hamilton coach Steve Belles said, “It is an ongoing investigation.” He would not comment further.
When pressed for more information, Mejia said police “are not releasing any details of the acts.”
“As many complex cases, investigators believe there may be additional victims or witnesses and we are encouraging them to call Chandler Police,” he said.
Hamilton has been a powerhouse football program since it began playing in 1999, a year after the school opened. It won seven state championships from 2003 to 2012 and produced countless college players. Belles has been in charge since 2006, winning five titles.
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