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Coach suspended, 5 students charged in attempted agg. rape case at Grundy Co. High School

Sheriff Clint Shrum and the Grundy Co. Sheriff's Office held a news conference Thursday to discuss details in the hazing incident. (Image: WTVC)

UPDATE (Monday, 12 p.m.)

All 5 students appeared in court. Read the latest here.

UPDATE (Friday 6:30 pm ET):

The Tennessee Supreme Court has released a statement saying that the Grundy County Juvenile Court has issued a court order regarding the court session for the five students, closing the arraignment to the general public and to media outlets.

The court order was given by Judge Trey Anderson III, citing TN Supreme Court Rule 30 on Media Guidelines and TN Rule 114 on Confidentiality of Juvenile Procedure.

You can read the court order below:

Depend on us to update this story as we learn more.


UPDATE (Friday 3:15 pm ET):

Grundy County School Board member Chris Groom has confirmed that Friday's football game between Upperman High School and Grundy County High School has been cancelled.

Putnam County Director of Schools Jerry Boyd told us that Grundy County High School's principal called Upperman High School Friday afternoon and cancelled the game.

This will count as a forfeit for Grundy.

Depend on us to update this story as we learn more.


UPDATE: (Friday, 12 pm ET):

Sheriff Shrum clarified some details about what happened.

He says the School Resource Officer (SRO) was notified of the incident by the assistant coach at 9:55 a.m.

Shrum says the SRO investigated, and contacted him at 1 p.m.

And he says all 5 players who are charged now have ankle monitors, and are under house arrest until Monday.

Meanwhile, Upperman High School, who was scheduled to play Grundy County High School Friday night, confirms to NewsChannel 9 that the game is still on.

We are waiting on a call back from Upperman High School's athletic director about how the decision was made.

Grundy County officials said they will meet Monday to discuss whether or not to finish out the team's season.


UPDATE (Thursday, 4:30pm ET):

In the Grundy County Sheriff's Office news conference Thursday afternoon, Sheriff Clint Shrum says that five Grundy County High School students have been charged with attempted aggravated rape after a hazing incident.

The students had met around 5 a.m. Wednesday morning to work out.

Following the workout session, Shrum says the victim was thrown to the ground and several students held down the victim as another assaulted the freshman football player with a dust mop's metal handle.

Sheriff Shrum says one of the students had a phone and took video of the incident. Shrum says in the video, you can clearly hear the victim shouting "Stop! Stop!"

The phone is being sent to the TBI.

Sheriff Shrum says that the victim's parents took him to the hospital, and would not elaborate on how seriously the 15-year-old had been hurt.

Sheriff Shrum said that while they initially responded to the call as a hazing incident, they classify it as an attempted aggravated rape case and have charged the students accordingly.

The sheriff says that the five students charged are between 14 and 17 years old - four of them are juniors, and one is a senior.

The students charged have been put on house arrest with GPS ankle monitors on. They will be in court on Monday.

Head football coach Casey Tate has been suspended indefinitely pending this new information from the investigation.

We asked Sheriff Shrum where Coach Tate was at the time of the alleged assault.

Shrum says he spoke with Tate, who said that he told police none of the players had the coaches' permission to be at the field house at that hour.

Sheriff Shrum said that he does not think the attack was planned.

Grundy County School Board member Chris Groom told us that the board would likely call a meeting next week to discuss the rest of the school's football season.

You can watch the Grundy County Sheriff's Office 4:30pm ET news conference here:

The Grundy County School Board meets Thursday evening for their regular meeting, held on the second Thursday of every month.

At the start of the meeting, Board member Paul Gallagher read a letter from a board attorney stating that the board and its members are not authorized to discuss the hazing incident.

The board did however vote to hold a special session Monday night to discuss the future of the Grundy County High School football team.

The session will be open to the public.

Depend on us to update this story as we learn more.


UPDATE (Thursday, 2:30pm ET):

The Grundy County Director of Schools Jessie Kinsey says head football coach Casey Tate is suspended from coaching at Grundy County High School until further notice.

According to an email, there was new information revealed in the student hazing incident.

Kinsey says the assistant coach, Greg Brewer, will assume the role for now.

The Grundy County Sheriff's Office is holding a news conference at 4:30 p.m. ET to discuss details in the investigation.


ORIGINAL STORY:

The Grundy County Sheriff's Office (GCSO) is investigating a hazing incident that happened at the Grundy County School football field house Wednesday morning.

GCSO investigators interviewed students, teachers, and parents Wednesday afternoon to learn more about what happened.

Grundy County Director of Schools Jessie Kinsey says that the students involved in the hazing will be punished according to the handbook.

Director Kinsey says that the incident has also been referred to the Department of Children's Services, law enforcement, and the DA's office for review.

Sheriff Clint Shrum said in a statement Wednesday evening that criminal charges could result from the incident.

Late Thursday, 12th Judicial District Attorney General Mike Taylor told NewsChannel 9 he anticipates charges will be filed against several juvenile suspects in court.

We have reached out to the Sheriff's Office and Grundy County Schools for further details in the investigation.

Depend on us to update this story as we learn more.


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