4 Maryland JV football players charged as adults with rape in alleged broomstick hazing

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DAMASCUS, Md. (WJLA) - Four Damascus High School junior varsity football players accused of hazing teammates with a broomstick will be charged as adults with first degree rape, according to authorities.

Montgomery County Public Schools released a statement Wednesday saying that the State’s Attorney for Montgomery County was amending the charges for Jean Claude "JC" Abedi, Kristian Lee, Will Smith and Caleb Thorpe, who are all 15 years old and accused of raping their fellow teammates on Halloween.

Officials say the fifth player's case will stay in juvenile court.

Sources confirm the five accused players used a wooden broomstick to sodomize the victims. The attacks, which school administrators have called "upsetting and unacceptable," happened following afternoon dismissal in the boy's locker room near the gymnasium. The four victims were picked, in part, based on their age and level of athleticism, sources add.

Montgomery County Police had initially charged three of the players with two counts of second-degree rape and two counts of attempted second-degree rape. A fourth player was charged with three counts of second-degree rape. The fifth player was charged with one count of attempted second-degree rape.

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