Coopersville hazing prompts federal l...

Coopersville hazing prompts federal lawsuit

There are 204 comments on the WZZM Grand Rapids story from Jun 2, 2008, titled Coopersville hazing prompts federal lawsuit. In it, WZZM Grand Rapids reports that:

School officials and former students in Coopersville are facing a $5 million dollar federal lawsuit in connection with athletic hazing incidents last year.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at WZZM Grand Rapids.

Jamie B

Lafayette, IN

#82 Jun 3, 2008
Sam wrote:
<quoted text>
If they win how does that help my 1st grader? Oh I got it, less resources for the teachers to use! Sounds good to me! Insurance may cover it, but what happens when the insurance costs go up?
It will help your 1st grader by possibly stopping this from happening to them, It's alot of $ but often times that is what it takes to grab attention. Like the previous poster stated, the parents bringing the suit did not set the amount. Also most likly will be settled out of court for far less anyways. Next time god forbid this happens agian bet the school issues an apology......This is still mind boggeling that kids think that to humiliate someone in this manner, such as putting your private part into someones face is ok. This was not your normal boys horsing around, this was very dehumanizing to these victoms.

Since: May 08

Wyoming, MI

#83 Jun 3, 2008
I know for a fact that schools will not do anything unless threaten them with a lawsuit, my friends son was being bullied to the fact he was beat up in the bathroom almost every day, kick in privates all the time and nothing was done. She told them they had 1 more time to fix the problem or her laywer was going to be there the next day, it got fixed. Oh by the way this was at a private school.
4boys-1princess

Syracuse, NY

#84 Jun 3, 2008
coops student wrote:
coopersville is all about football so what can you expect. i know what ever your last name is you get treated different. it not even close to be fair for all the other students
I think the name recognition thing is lessening. Coopersville is growing quickly, and the new folks have no idea what the "old names" are, and could really care less. And really, it is the same everywhere. Not fair, but common.

“Have a nice day!”

Since: Apr 08

Location hidden

#85 Jun 3, 2008
coopersville mom wrote:
I totally agree with concerned parent. It's amazing what a simple acknowledgement from the superintendant could have done. Oniell just wanted this to go away and never even tried to fix the problem. It's time for a new superintendant, some school board members, certain coaches and a secretary.
I agree!! Get some new blood in there.

“Have a nice day!”

Since: Apr 08

Location hidden

#86 Jun 3, 2008
red wrote:
PATTON SHOULD HAVE BEEN CANNED A LONG TIME AGO.He`s always favored those on the team who`s parents have money! My son was a member of the CHS baseball team for 4 years from 94-97,his freshman year,freshman,jv, and varsity went to Florida for spring break,being a single mom that was a lot of money for me to come up with for him to go,but I made sacrifices so he could.The 2nd night there I got a phone call from Patton,informing me that he was being sent home on a bus , by himself(he was 15 at the time).The trip took two days.2-3 years later,the football teams went to Mexico,several of the members were caught drinking,the legal age in Mexico being 18,so they were old enough there.But because they were from "better" families than what my son was from.they were allowed to stay because they didn`t want 5 or 6 kids who were 18 to fly home together.Important last names and money have always talked in this school when it comes to sports!!!
Well that should shut some people up! Sounds like you have first-hand personal experience with the whole thing. Thanks for your comment. Hopefully people will start to get the message that favoritism has to stop.

“Have a nice day!”

Since: Apr 08

Location hidden

#87 Jun 3, 2008
ToniQ wrote:
I know for a fact that schools will not do anything unless threaten them with a lawsuit, my friends son was being bullied to the fact he was beat up in the bathroom almost every day, kick in privates all the time and nothing was done. She told them they had 1 more time to fix the problem or her laywer was going to be there the next day, it got fixed. Oh by the way this was at a private school.
I agree that this is not just a Coopersville thing by any means. It is common-place and "accepted" too many times. While my son had different problems at Coops, it took me threatening a lawyer for them to get something done. I don't get why they can't just be forthright and deal with problems; they always get worse when swept under the rug.
Mike

Lansing, MI

#88 Jun 3, 2008
mama knows wrote:
I blame the adults more than the kids. Wonder if Coopersville will have the cajones to fire Barret and Bennink if proven that they knew what was going on.
Barrett was gone last spring already. Read the articles from last year.

Since: Feb 08

Portage, MI

#89 Jun 3, 2008
I will agree that this was all wrong on the part of students and teachers. The boy's it was happening to have most likely lost much of their self asteem as well as developed resentment toward the the school and teachers for allowing them to be treated in that manner.

The other point here will be if a lawsuit settlement is reached through court?

All of you can count on an increased millage to cover the cost of a settlement.

Good luck.

If it does all come out of federal? We all will take part in paying for it.

I think the kids that did the hazing, should have their parents put on public display!

That sounds crude but really the parents should have to pay as well for raising such an evil little dude that would impliment such behavier!

Kind of like My wife & I raised our kids, if they were playing together and one did wrong that may or may not have included the other. They received their punishment as a team.

That is the way this should be treated!

If it were just one kid? It would not have taken place. It was performed as a team! I would think there may be even more kids involved that have yet to be mentioned???

“Have a nice day!”

Since: Apr 08

Location hidden

#90 Jun 3, 2008
Mike wrote:
<quoted text>
Barrett was gone last spring already. Read the articles from last year.
Sorry, I meant to say Patten. My bad.

“Have a nice day!”

Since: Apr 08

Location hidden

#91 Jun 3, 2008
Randy Whitten wrote:
I will agree that this was all wrong on the part of students and teachers. The boy's it was happening to have most likely lost much of their self asteem as well as developed resentment toward the the school and teachers for allowing them to be treated in that manner.
The other point here will be if a lawsuit settlement is reached through court?
All of you can count on an increased millage to cover the cost of a settlement.
Good luck.
If it does all come out of federal? We all will take part in paying for it.
I think the kids that did the hazing, should have their parents put on public display!
That sounds crude but really the parents should have to pay as well for raising such an evil little dude that would impliment such behavier!
Kind of like My wife & I raised our kids, if they were playing together and one did wrong that may or may not have included the other. They received their punishment as a team.
That is the way this should be treated!
If it were just one kid? It would not have taken place. It was performed as a team! I would think there may be even more kids involved that have yet to be mentioned???
I don't know that the money would come out of a millage. I think insurance covers that stuff but it doesn't matter to me. Ive been told for years that they didn't have the staff and programs available for special ed. services for my son. Finally I gave up and started homeschooling him. I spoke to a well-known lawyer who specializes in special ed. law and he said I absolutely had a case, but because I didn't have enough emotional strength left to deal with more battles(or money to start the suit) I left it alone for now. The lawyer says that the school chooses to accept money for special ed., and then because they accept it, they must provide said services. It's a big pain, but anyway my point is, money is the only thing that matters when it comes to enforcing laws, rules, conduct, and accountability. My example has nothing to do with the hazing thing, but I have had to deal with the mindset of the admin. at Coops., and they are very smarmy and condescending, so I understand that the families of these victims have probably been treated the same way(on a side note, my son was bullied for other reasons and little was done to stop it until he clocked someone)
a grama

AOL

#92 Jun 3, 2008
Coopersville has had a stuff like this going on for years. They don,t try to do things right for the kids only what keeps the teachers happy. If you belong to certain families you got it made but if you don,t look out! I had a crew of kids graduate from there but their high school years were not the greatest. We didn,t belong to the right family. what happened to these boys was worse then hazing. these boys are in our prayers.
Darin

Byron Center, MI

#93 Jun 3, 2008
I don't think any of them boys should be allowed in any regular school again. Maybe an adult Education or Alternative school. I have 3 kids still in Coopersville and i know if that ever happened to one of my kids, those boys wouldn't have to worry about enrolling in any school.

Since: Feb 08

Portage, MI

#94 Jun 3, 2008
mama knows wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't know that the money would come out of a millage. I think insurance covers that stuff but it doesn't matter to me. Ive been told for years that they didn't have the staff and programs available for special ed. services for my son. Finally I gave up and started homeschooling him. I spoke to a well-known lawyer who specializes in special ed. law and he said I absolutely had a case, but because I didn't have enough emotional strength left to deal with more battles(or money to start the suit) I left it alone for now. The lawyer says that the school chooses to accept money for special ed., and then because they accept it, they must provide said services. It's a big pain, but anyway my point is, money is the only thing that matters when it comes to enforcing laws, rules, conduct, and accountability. My example has nothing to do with the hazing thing, but I have had to deal with the mindset of the admin. at Coops., and they are very smarmy and condescending, so I understand that the families of these victims have probably been treated the same way(on a side note, my son was bullied for other reasons and little was done to stop it until he clocked someone)
Yes I understand what you mean. I am pretty much full of hot air today. But I thought I would pull someone's nose hairs with my post.

Regardles it was wrong and the mental punishment they put the affected through is wrong...

I was greatly picked on early in high school due to my height! I did not let it hit me mentally because I except the fact that I am short...
But it did make me fight and try to be better at anything the taller kids were trying to be good at.

Bragging rights I guess.
nightowl

Hudsonville, MI

#95 Jun 3, 2008
I agree I know of a athelete at coops that had the right last name and needed help in math , he got the help he needed to stay on the football team and when my kid needed help in math ,who is not involved in atheletics they pretty much blew me off.

“Any good mice lately?”

Since: Mar 08

Hairball Holler

#96 Jun 3, 2008
These bullies were bordering on sexual assault. Thye need to bend over and take it like a man now.
C-ville dad

United States

#97 Jun 3, 2008
As is typical in todays society, the media has not reported all the facts and some of you are buying into the notion that since you read the paper every day you are well informed. I am sure that the vast majority of you on here have no idea what really happened. Would your opinions on the victims "suffering" be the same if you learned he had done these same things previously to others, If he had "gotten" what he had "dished out" in the past?
Concerned Parent

Virginia Beach, VA

#98 Jun 3, 2008
I am tired of hearing or reading the word "hazing" in this. This goes way beyond that. It is a Sexual Assault. Those kids should NOT be allowed back into Coopersville because I really do not think that the victims of this should have to deal with having to see them. I am sure that most of you reading this would agree that High School is one of the best times in life. Why take that away from the victims?? They have enough to deal with.
Concerned Parent

Virginia Beach, VA

#99 Jun 3, 2008
C-ville dad wrote:
As is typical in todays society, the media has not reported all the facts and some of you are buying into the notion that since you read the paper every day you are well informed. I am sure that the vast majority of you on here have no idea what really happened. Would your opinions on the victims "suffering" be the same if you learned he had done these same things previously to others, If he had "gotten" what he had "dished out" in the past?
Did he use a toothbrush??? Did he give him a "brown trout"?? Did he give him a "fish tail"? I am not sure on all of the details, but I do know some. I do not believe however that a toothbrush was common. You must know more than I do.

“Have a nice day!”

Since: Apr 08

Location hidden

#100 Jun 3, 2008
Randy Whitten wrote:
<quoted text>
Yes I understand what you mean. I am pretty much full of hot air today. But I thought I would pull someone's nose hairs with my post.
Regardles it was wrong and the mental punishment they put the affected through is wrong...
I was greatly picked on early in high school due to my height! I did not let it hit me mentally because I except the fact that I am short...
But it did make me fight and try to be better at anything the taller kids were trying to be good at.
Bragging rights I guess.
I don't think you're full of hot air at all. None of us know all the finer points of the law on everything. We just know what our own personal experiences are and those of our kids and our neighbor's kids and all that. We just want our kids to be safe, and not taunted or threatened for calling out stupid, harmful behavior when we see it.

Since: Feb 08

Portage, MI

#101 Jun 3, 2008
mama knows wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't think you're full of hot air at all. None of us know all the finer points of the law on everything. We just know what our own personal experiences are and those of our kids and our neighbor's kids and all that. We just want our kids to be safe, and not taunted or threatened for calling out stupid, harmful behavior when we see it.
Thank you Mamma Knows

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