Evangel Football Players Expelled – Accused of Bullying
Four Evangel Christian Academy football players have been expelled from the school after allegedly being involved in a bullying incident. The incident allegedly happened at the Crown Plaza Hotel in Baton Rouge the night before a high school playoff game. The principal, Staci Rathbun says "The players crossed the line with their behavior." Some are calling for the players to face charges, but there's no word if Baton Rouge police were contacted.
Some parents of those expelled are questioning the actions of the principal. They claim no one from the school contacted them to hear their side of the story.
One parent shared this email sent to the principal:
I am terribly bothered by the fact my son is being removed from a school that we believed & invested tons of money and time in based on hearsay. I also believe it is unjust and unfair to only hear reports from some students and not all that are assumed to be involved. I pray that the decisions made are not based on race or hearsay since after reading the attached statement proves others are responsible instead and they are not being addressed. If it is known of all parties involved that are listed in this statement, then why were only African-American boys dismissed?
Another parent shared this information:
My child attends Evangel Christian School, I received a call from the principal stating that after investigating he was being released from the school effectively now. The principal only interviewed boys of another race. She declined to comment and was locked in a room at the school. Staci Rathbin did not want to address that an autistic child had been assaulted.
Pastor and Head Football Coach Denny Duron sent KEEL News the full statement from Principal Staci Rathbin:
We released students today that we love...but they crossed the Evangel line with their behavior. We have a strict policy when it comes to bullying. I'm sure that seems harsh to the parents of the disciplined students, I understand that...but its the Evangel way. We do not want any student here to feel uncomfortable in their space because of intimidation by another student!
And this is a statement shared by one of the players on the team who heard loud noises in one room.
The room across the hall was making so much noise, we walked over and knocked. Everyone in that room answered the door at the same time and we told them to shut the hell up before Pastor and coach heard them. From the door, we could see one of our teammates in the back of the room that was naked from getting out of the shower tell one of our special needs teammates to, "get on his knees and open his mouth" to try and make everyone laugh. One of the guys told another teammate to stop laughing and then had a screwdriver pulled on him in attempts to engage in a fight. We went back to our own room after that and played a football game the next day.