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Thursday, November 27, 2014

Athletic director replaced at Science

By Sarina Trangle
Posted
Marisol Diaz/The Riverdale Press
Pier Berkmans, 17, walks out of Bronx Criminal Court on March 8.
Marisol Diaz/The Riverdale Press
Boubacar Diallo, 16, approaches the entrance of the courtroom.
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Bronx Science has replaced its athletic director in the wake of a freshman’s allegations that he was repeatedly hazed and sexually harassed by older students on the school’s track team.

After police arrested three track athletes on Feb. 27, the Department of Education suspended Bronx High School of Science Athletic Director Marion Dietrich and two coaches. The suspension does not affect any classroom teaching assignments the three may have. 

On Monday, Principal Valerie Reidy announced that the school had selected two new athletic directors, Mr. McGrath and Ms. Bertsch, who met with coaches to review Public School Athletic League rules and school sports policies. 

“We will also be reminding all of our students about expectations for appropriate behavior and what they should do if they experience, witness or learn of conduct not within these guidelines. 

 

This message will be delivered at mandatory meetings for all spring teams later this month,” Ms. Reidy wrote in a March 11 e-mail to parents.

On March 8, Bronx Criminal Court Judge Jeanette Rodriguez-Morick extended court orders forbidding Pier Berkmans, 17, Thomas Brady, 16, and Boubacar Diallo, 17  from contacting the alleged victim. 

According to the criminal compliant, the trio is responsible for restraining the victim and repeatedly sticking fingers in his anus through his clothes. They also allegedly threatened to rape him. 

The students have been charged with forcible touching, assault and hazing. Though they are minors, as 16- and 17-year-olds they are treated as adults in the criminal justice system, and consequently, their records are unsealed. 

However, if convicted, teens between 16 and 19 can be deemed youthful offenders by judges, according to Angel Cruz, an attorney representing Boubacar. Youthful offenders’ have their records sealed after a case is closed. 

Although Judge Rodriguez-Morick said she understood the “intense” press interest in the case, she denied media outlets’ requests to photograph and videotape the students’ appearance. 

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