Court briefs

May 23, 2003|by GREGORY T. SIMMONS

Boy pleads involved in school assault

Lawyers said Wednesday that a 17-year-old North Hagerstown High School lacrosse player who usually was well-behaved and a good student had injected steroids in March, leading to an assault on school administrators, including Principal Robert "Bo" Myers.

The boy pleaded "involved" in juvenile court to one count of second-degree assault in the March 17 scuffle at the school. An involved plea is the juvenile equivalent to a guilty plea in adult court.

As part of the plea agreement, another second-degree assault charge and a disrupting school activities charge were dropped.

Circuit Judge Donald E. Beachley, sitting in juvenile court, sentenced the boy to indefinite probation and ordered him to continue drug and psychiatric counseling.

Assistant Washington County State's Attorney Michelle Flores said in court Wednesday that the boy began acting strangely after he had taken an exam and received detention after being rude to a teacher.


During after-school detention, Myers saw the boy's eyes were bloodshot and asked if he was using drugs, and the student became irate, Flores said.

He tried to leave the building, and in the process grabbed a fire extinguisher, which he swung at Assistant Principal Ben Brauer and missed, Flores said. The boy then sprayed Brauer in the face with the extinguisher, Flores said.

When police arrived, they found administrators piled on top of the boy restraining him. The boy "was attempting to lunge the pen in the direction of his own neck and Mr. Myers' neck," Flores said.

The boy told Beachley "I made a poor choice in using steroids and it brought out the absolute worst" in him.

Myers told Beachley the student has a good record at the school, but "this is probably the most serious incident in my years as an administrator."

The boy was moved to Boonsboro High School, Myers said in court, but his placement for his senior year has not been determined.

Former coach seeks jury trial in assault

Former South Hagerstown High School wrestling coach Brian Jacob Brake, 37, of Mercersburg, Pa., asked Wednesday that a jury hear his case on a second-degree assault charge stemming from a February argument between him and a wrestling team member.

According to charging documents, on Feb. 4, a student asked to leave wrestling practice. Brake allegedly told the boy he was acting like a baby, and the boy showed the teacher his middle finger and made a verbal remark.

Brake, also a math teacher at the school, allegedly shoved the boy against a wall and held him there, demanding an apology, according to the charging documents.

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