6:28 AM EDT, May 18, 2010
UPDATE: The four Carmel High School basketball players charged in an assault investigation were released around 4:30 a.m. Tuesday after posting bond.
After an extensive investigation lasting several months, prosecutors have decided to file charges against four seniors on the Carmel High School basketball team accused of assaulting underclassmen.
The misdemeanor charges were filed Monday against 19 year-old John Scott Lazkowski, 18 year-old Oscar Falodun, 18 year-old Brandon Hoge, and 19 year-old Robert Kitzinger. All of those battery and criminal recklessness charges are related to a locker room attack of 3 victims described by prosecutor Leerkamp as hazing gone too far.
Because one student was attacked on a Carmel school bus as it travelled back from a basketball game in Terre Haute January 22nd, Hoge and Kitzinger face additional battery charges in Hendricks County.
Hamilton County Prosecutor Sonia Leerkamp announced during a news conference Monday, the investigation ran into a number of complications including the number of witnesses, recovering the video from the school bus surveillance camera, working with law enforcement and the school, as well as collaboration between two counties. Leerkamp also said investigators needed to determine whether what happened was in fact, criminal.
Leerkamp also said that Carmel High School handled the initial report properly, suspending three students immediately after hearing of the incident. However, she believes the school needs to change their policy.
Since then, the four students have been expelled, although Leerkamp indicated they would be able to graduate, but possibly not with the rest of their class.
If convicted, the students could face up to one year in prison in additional to a fine.
MORE DETAILS ON CRIMINAL CHARGES:
John Scott Laskowski, 19, has been charged with three counts of criminal recklesness.
Oscar Falodun, 18, has been charged with two counts of criminal recklessness and one count of battery.
Brandon Hoge, 18, has been charged with two counts of battery and one count of recklessness.
Robert Kitzinger, 19, has been charged with two counts of criminal recklessness and two counts of battery.