Cheerleader Required to Cheer for Man Who Assaulted Her

If someone assaulted you, would you want to then cheer for his performance on a basketball court? A 16-year-old Texas high school student sure didn’t.

High school football star Rakheem Bolton and two others were indicted for sexual assault of a child–identified only as H.S.–at a post-game party in 2008. According to H.S.–a fellow student and cheerleader at Silsbee High–Bolton, football player Christian Rountree and another juvenile male forced her into a room, locked the door, held her down and sexually assaulted her. When other party-goers tried to get into the room, two of the men fled through an open window, including Bolton, who left clothing behind. Bolton allegedly threatened to shoot the occupants of the house when the homeowner refused to return his clothes.

In September 2010, Bolton pled guilty to a lesser charge of Class A Assault and was sentenced to one year in prison, a sentence that was suspended by the judge in lieu of two years probation, a $2,500 fine, community service and an anger management course.

Silsbee school officials had two responses to the incident. First, they urged H.S. to keep a low profile, such as avoiding the school cafeteria and not taking part in homecoming activities. With the support of her family, she refused to do so, rejecting the notion that she had anything to be ashamed of. Secondly, school officials kicked her off the cheerleading squad for refusing to cheer for Bolton. No kidding.

Bolton had been allowed back on campus during a brief period when one grand jury withdrew the charges before another grand jury reinstated them. During a basketball game, H.S. cheered for the entire team but refused to cheer “Rakheem” during his free-throws, so she was off the squad.

H.S.’s parents sued the school for violating her right to free speech, but an appeals court dismissed her case earlier this month. The bizarre reasoning: “In her capacity as cheerleader, [she] served as a mouthpiece through which the school could disseminate speech–namely, support for its athletic teams.” Not cheering for Bolton “constituted substantial interference with the work of the school because, as a cheerleader, [she] was at the basketball game for the purpose of cheering, a position she undertook voluntarily.” In other words, the “work of the school” is basketball, and H.S. was obligated to put on a robotic smile and cheer for the man who had assaulted her.

Silsbee High School officials should be held accountable for their actions. Richard Bain, Jr., the superintendent of schools, allegedly ordered H.S. to cheer for her attacker. Why don’t you tell him what you think? You can contact Bain and the school’s new principal, Eldon Franco:

Richard Bain Jr., Superintendent, Silsbee Independent School District, 415 Highway 327 West, Silsbee, TX, 77656; rbain@silsbeeisd.org; (409) 980-7800

Eldon Franco, Principal, Silsbee High School, 1575 Highway 96 North, Silsbee, TX, 77656-4799; efranco@silsbeeisd.org; (409) 980-7800

Edited Photo from Flickr.com user DeusXFlorida through Creative Commons License 2.0

Comments

  1. 2WarAbnVet says:

    Just further proof that the nation's education system is run by the same brand of idiots that operate the criminal justice system.

  2. Where is her dad, brothers, or male relatives?
    Is this OK with them? This should be discussed with Rakheem.

    • snobographer says:

      It would help if men, particularly men who sit on juries and judge's benches, cared about all victims of sexual assault and not just the ones they happen to be related to.

    • What are her male relatives going to be able to do that her female relatives can't? As much as it might satisfy a certain level of bloodlust, there is nothing noble about an eye for an eye.

  3. How about she writes her own cheer:

    "Uh-Huh, here we go.. How Funky Is Your Chicken/How Funky is Your Chicken? How Loose is Your Goose/How Loose is Your Goose? Just thought you should know / Just Thought You Should Know, A Rapist on the Loose / A Rapist on the Loose…

  4. Trust me. Where I live, and if this were my daughter. this guy would not be around to "cheer" for.

  5. This rapist should have to register as a sex offender and should not be allowed in the school. The prosecutors and judge should also answer for allowing rapists to go free, not register and offend again. This punk will offend again. and again.

    • You are correct … Convicted rapists *must* register as sex offenders. The law does not *and* cannot require ~alleged~ rapists to register.

      Consider this… If every person accused of rape was required by law to register as a sex offender .. think just how many potentially innocent people would be on the register?

  6. I used to go to a high school where Richard Bain was the principle and this does not surprise me.

  7. That boy should not have been allowed on the team. Only good students should be allowed on extra curricular activities such as bball. What a disgusting story!

  8. Who is the judge that suspended the extremely short prison term? I want to write him.

  9. I wrote Lamar University, which helped train Superintendent Richard Bain for his job, and told them I hoped they would better train their students in future. Good luck to H.S. and her family. I hope the boys involved received counseling sufficient to help them understand that rape is a crime; sometimes going to court doesn't quite get the message through, for some reason.

  10. What happened to innocent until proven guilty? If you idiots want to form an angry mob every time someone is accused of something, what's the point of having a judicial system? You all seem to be missing the fact that only was he not convicted of anything at the time of the basketball game, he wasnt even charged with anything!

    • You are correct about "innocent until proven guilty"; too often that is forgotten.

      However, I ask you this…
      What about the victim's rights? She was "allowed" to sit on sidelines if she didn't want to cheer for her ~alleged~ rapist by name. Yet, Rahkeem was not suspended from the game/season (much less school) with rape charges pending? Last time I checked students, athlete or not, in Texas schools get suspended for far, far less.

      I love my share of sports, but when sports becomes more important than victims' rights, something is seriously wrong!

    • Apparently he was charged and pled guilty to assault. We can presume he was also charged with rape, and plea-bargained down to the assault charge.

      While it's possible he may still have been innocent and pled to avoid the risk of a false conviction, I don't think the presumption of innocence applies anymore.

    • whether he was charged with anything is completely irrelevant as to whether her conduct warrants her staying or getting removed from the team.

    • Well, the assualt happened before the time of the basketball game and whether or not he was charged is irrelevant. What if this girl was your younger sister? Maybe you would feel differently.

  11. H.S. should appeal, that decision is dead WRONG. Not only is she entitled to abstain from speech she finds abhorrent, Title IX should prevent her from adverse treatment in an educational environment as a result of a sexual assault.

  12. SHS Cheer says:

    I was a cheerleader on the squad that H.S. was on. This story is not the entire story. She was told that if she didnt feel comfortable cheering for him that she could take a squat on the side line. Instead she decided to turn her back on the side line and sit down on the court. The friends and family of Rahkeem became very angry and it caused major disturbances at the game. She was kicked off once she REFUSED to take a suttle approach to the issue and made things worse. There was not enough evidence for the grand jury to indict the boys. If their was evidence that someone was truly raped then this would have gone further and they would have their appropiate punishment. Also, she was told that it would be in her best intrest not to go to the homecoming game because people from other cities were threatining her. The accused boys were not present at school nor at the football games. They did get suspended until the grand jury decision came back. None of you went to school and seen what really happened. You should not be saying such horrible things about people when you only know one side.

    • "There was not enough evidence for the grand jury to indict the boys."

      "Rakheem Jamal Bolton stood before Judge Joe Bob Golden in a Hardin County courtroom … " Just because he pled guilty to a lesser charge of assault does not mean he is innocent of rape. It only means not enough evidence for the desired indictment/conviction.

      • Him pleading guilty to a lesser charge does not AT ALL mean there was "not enough evidence for the desired indictment/conviction." He was indicted (that means charged) with sexual assault of a minor. When someone pleads guilty to a lesser charge, that is called a plea BARGAIN. They make a deal. They can plead guilty to a lesser charge with a lighter sentence, or they can risk pleading not guilty and allow their case to be brought before a jury. If the case against him was weak, his lawyer would not have advised him to take a plea. People take plea bargains when it is likely the jury will FIND THEM GUILTY. Which means there was evidence against him. Plea bargains are a function of overcrowded court dockets. It is more time and cost effective to plead defendants out rather than go through a lengthy trial.

    • Why should there be any obligation on her to take a subtle approach? Here are the Facts. He DID plead Guilty (that is a fact which can be found in the AP and numerous sources). He admitted in his allocution that he physically assaulted her. These are not anything anyone is denying. What she choses to do in regards to how she reacts to him still being seen as an athlete is her right. I've been a counselor in a women's shelter, and let me tell you, "not going to trial" is frequent because most of these cases are his word vs. hers. Throwing aside what you think of the rape case, he was CONVICTED of assault. That's not in dispute, that's fact, links in this article and anywhere else, or I could print his allocution.

    • Rakheem Bolton was eventually charged with and pleaded guilty to SEXUAL ASSAULT. Can you tell me what the difference is between rape and sexual assault?

    • Um, did you actually read this article and the one from KFDM News that had a different author? The KFDM article has the history of the coverage. Including the very plain statement: "In November 2009 a grand jury indicted Bolton and former Silsbee High School football player Christian Paul Rountree, 20, on charges of sexual assault." The first grand jury in January 2009 didn't indict him but the second grand jury did.

      Even after that, how did you miss the fact that HE PLEAD *GUILTY* TO A LESSER CHARGE OF SEXUAL ASSAULT? Yeah. That's right. He admitted his own guilt to assaulting the girl in court. He plead guilty to a CRIME. He plead to a lesser charge only to get out of jail time and only because the victim agreed to the plea bargain.

      Good for her for not sitting politely on the side line to make this CRIMINAL'S family and him feel better about the CRIME he committed against her and he's walking around freely after. He should be locked up! And you and everyone that's told her to "play nice" should be ashamed of yourselves! Why should she have to be subtle about living her life as normal as possible after all the damage Bolton caused her? He already changed her life forever – now the way she interacts at school? When is enough enough? When can the victim stop being forced to do things she doesn't want to do? Stop re-victimizing.

    • "Bolton plead guilty to a lesser charge of Class A Assault". Because he was innocent? Is that what you mean? And her team mates, including yourself, cheered him on while she was invited to stand aside? Would you take a subtle approach if this had happened to you, your little sister, your friend? Think deep, young one, and speak when you are sure.

    • You seem to defending and explaining a lot, yet the bottom line is this girl was assaulted, regardless of whether or not it was confirmed in a court of law, and the school should have protected her. Its sad a girl would defend a violent act against another girl. It could have been you. Try and put yourself in her place.

    • So what if Rahkeem and his friends were angry she didn't cheer? If they are causing a disturbance for her not cheering his name, then they should be kicked out of the game.

      Another thing – in a lot of rape cases, there is a lack of evidence of the crime if a condom was used. And even if the condom wasn't used, there are a lot of rape kits that have not been processed when a woman is raped. Just because they weren't indicted does not mean they did not do the crime.

    • uch like the rest of what is going on in the U.S. You must cheer and idolize those whom are taking from you.

    • DisgustedBy SHSCheer says:

      SHS Cheer, you have a lot of growing up to do. You are clearly still entrenched in the high school mentality, where rumor, innuendo and gossip substitute for fact. The FACTS are as follows:
      1. Rakheem Bolton WAS indicted for sexual assault.
      2. Rakheem Bolton PLED GUILTY to assault (pleading to a lesser charge does not imply innocence, uneducated, immature girl)
      Furthermore, Rakheem Bolton should have been the one on the receiving end of all of what was done to H.S., but clearly, that high school is just as poisonous as too many others, as your post makes crystal clear.

    • I'd feel bad for Rakheem and his familiy for the embarrassment of this young girl's not-so-subtle approach of reacting IF HE HADN'T RAPED HER.

    • Why didn't you and the rest of the cheerleading squad support your fellow teammate? You should have all turned your backs on him. Way to stand up for what's right SHS Cheer.

    • So it seems more like the anger and outbursts of the rapist's family and friends were what caused the "disturbance" not the victim silently turning her back during a cheer. What is wrong with our education system when we are giving more merit to students who are up in arms about a rape victim's silent protest than to the actual victim who is being admirably courageous and standing up for herself???? I considered for a minute that maybe our schools are too busy teaching kids proper grammar and spelling, but your post convinced me this was not the case.

  13. SHS Cheer says:

    o BTW… the principal listed was not even the prinicpal at the school at the time. That shows how much this journalist knows about the facts.

    • She noted that in the article. You might read for comprehension. She noted that she asked people to point this out to the NEW principle.

  14. SHSALUMNI says:

    You people are out of your minds. You didn't go to this school and you are not from this town. I am. You don't know these people involved at all. I do. I have no idea where you get your information, but I can promise, you are wrong. The boys were kept out of school until late April of 2009 I believe, after the Grand Jury said there was not enough evidence to indict them. After an entire year, Bolton was allowed to play basketball again and like SHS CHEER said, H.S.was told she could sit out but she chose to make a scene. There is definitely more than one side to this story and you ought to be ashamed for jumping to conclusions about boys you don't even know. And another thing, when the police lift the restraing order on the boys, they must be allowed back into PUBLIC SCHOOL. The last time I checked, public school was a non exhaustive public good. They have a right to this free education and if they are allowed legally to enter the building, the school isn't going to refuse them the right to an education. You people need a hobby.

    • FormerTXStudent says:

      Not enough evidence? That sucks for H.S. since the only evidence she had was her story and the guy's clothes. What other evidence is she supposed to provide? If her testimony is not enough, then these boys can repeat this brutal crime can again and again.

    • He does have a right to a public education, no one here will argue that. However, Athletics is not a right; it is a privilege. Students participate in Extra-Ciricular Activity based on their compliance with the guidelines of a school. This includes everything from GPA to school performance, etc. You have no right to play sports anywhere in the US. Or Debate. Or Public Speech. Or Chess Team. Or whatever. Those are privileges students have, not a right. He pled guilty. He got the sentence he did, which is fine, and he has to be admitted back into public school. But the honor of wearing a school jersey in an extra-circular? That's something you earn.. and with more then talent on the court/field.

      • SHS Cheer says:

        He did not plead guilty until after he graduated. At the time of the basketball season the grand jury did nto indict.

    • Last time I checked, students participating in athletics had to follow a code of conduct. Hmmm And if I were this young lady, you can bet your (you know what) I would have made a scene as well.

    • he was convicted of a lesser charge because he pleaded out not because he didn’t assulat this girl! None of these animals should be allowed within 100 miles of this girl, and how dare you come to the defense of a rapist!!! she was told she could sit out? as far as I am concerned the rapist should never been allowed on the team and a morals and behavior rule obviously needs to be set for participating in sports activities at a public school, a public school that mind you takes my tax dollars too!

    • DisgustedBy SHSCheer says:

      "…After an entire year, Bolton was allowed to play basketball again…" and then he pled GUILTY. What part of "he pled guilty" escapes your notice? He was allowed to play while there was still an open, unresolved RAPE accusation against him, yet SHE is the one who "made a scene"? What is WRONG with you people in that backwater, misanthropic stereotype of a rednecked ignoramus "community"? "Those boys" SHOULD have been kept out of school, and when they were legally allowed to return while their CASES WERE PENDING, should NEVER have been allowed to participate in sports while they worked on their plea bargains. Even more repugnant is the fact that a number of you sh!theels seem to think that a RAPE VICTIM should just keep her mouth shut and that it was her "fault" she was removed from the squad. YOU need an education, a conscience and an inkling of what it means to be raped.

      • shs cheer says:

        He was allowed to play again because a grand jury said there was not enough evidence! What part of that do YOU not understand! Maybe you should go research the case a little better before you start calling people names! It was not PENDING! the grand jury dropped it at that time!! It did not become PENDING again until they brought it before another Grand Jury. I have an education, a conscience, and an opinion. The difference is, my opionin is based on facts that i seen with my own eyes that happened at school and on the court.

        • “It did not become PENDING again until they brought it before another Grand Jury.”

          At which point it became PENDING again, thus shooting a hole in your own argument.

          Not to mention that the boy PLED GUILTY TO CLASS A ASSAULT.

          Next I’m sure you’re going to tell us “nothing” happened. …

          The more people like you dispute and justify this behavior, the more men, young and old, are going to think it’s okay.

          Think about that the next time someone sexually harasses your sister. Or mother.

          Or you.

    • That means that this girl has a right to an education as well, at a public school. Texas is a big place. I'm sure there's plenty of other schools he can go to where he doesn't impinge on this girls right to live her life free of fear and the constant reminder of what this guy and his creep friends have done to her. Surely a bit of a commute isn't too much to pay for his actions.

      I'm SICK of victims being told they have to hide and act all meek. They should be protected, not traumatised further.

    • I think you, and many other people on this thread, are missing an important fact when you try to protest that "she was told she could sit out if she wanted to and she chose to make a scene." Implicit in this claim is the idea that asking her to sit out is somehow repentance for this girl, that it should be ENOUGH for her to make her statement by sitting out. You're acting like the school offered her this great service, this wonderful option to recognize her struggles. Your use of the phrase "make a scene" is also unnerving. She "made a scene" by silently turning her back during a cheer? I'm sorry, maybe you missed the part where BOLTON RAPED HER. But ohhh right…she "made a scene!" How dare she.

      Am I the only one who doesn't think the school's allowing this young lady to "sit out" on a cheer is anywhere NEAR the service they REALLY owe to her??? Which, by the way, is not allowing a rapist to represent their school in sporting events, much less demand that he be cheered for.

  15. Gordon Gray says:

    Rakheem Bolton 's family is upset at the young lady's behavior? He's allowed to plead guilty to a lesser charge only to then have his sentence suspended? There is so, so much wrong with the story, where does one begin to attach logic? How is this mouth-breathing neanderthal allowed to participate in extra-curricular activities, anyway?

    Carlos, very well said. Mr. Bolton would be walking with a very serious limp, if her were walking at all…

    • SHS Cheer says:

      He was allowed to participate because the first grand jury didnt indict him. He was suspened and did not play football until the grand jury decided not to indict. He was not aloud to walk around the school or participate in any school function until then. Yall act like he walked away with nothing happening to him when it isnt true at all.

  16. Provided the information in the article is accurate, the Judge who allowed this punk to walk after he had already threatened someone else should be removed from the bench. If I was the father of the young lady who was raped by these animals, I'm afraid I would have blown his brains out all over the basketball court. Lets see just how this upsets his family.

    • Riley Frank says:

      the information was full of inaccuracies. If you would like to go to silsbeebee.com and read about it, I am sure you would have a better understanding of events.

  17. To Eldon Franco and Richard Bain Jr.,

    This is a disgusting use of your power and a lack of regard for women. My family has been in the education field for years and I thought this article came out of the middle east it is so sexist, how disgusting you chose to support a rapist so your school team could win some games. The rapist should be banned from sports teams in general – clearly he is incapable of playing with others off the court, he should not have the privilege of playing for his school. Shame on you for calling yourself an educator and allowing a decision like this to be upheld in America, and on your school for supporting outright abuse of a female student. You condone rape by your actions, imagine if this were your wife, your daughter or your sister or grandchild. With all the strength it took you to uphold this decision, other male students will see this as an example, and one day it very may well be someone close to you.

    To the cheerleader and her family, my sincerest condolences, you should not have had to suffer this kind of public humiliation and assault. Your attackers family is disgusting – upset you wouldn't cheer for their son the rapist? – let's hope this judge's ruling is overturned and you get the satisfaction of seeing them 'upset' as he heads to jail, hopefully for a long term. His mother should be ashamed of her parenting, she clearly did not teach him to respect women, so she likely feels guilty now that he's in trouble for his abuse towards you. Your bravery to come forward and stand your ground against the school, and superintendent Richard Bain and their unjust and sexist policy is to be admired. I hope you write a book and that this poor excuse for a superintendent is replaced by someone who has both the education and the wisdom to make decisions that treat the male and female students with respect and dignity.

    I agree with the statement above "The superintendent would have given the boy the satisfaction of hearing the cheerleader scream his name? Unbelievable. "

    I wrote to both of them – I also would like the judges contact information.

  18. Wow. Is that any way to treat a victim? Texas is really screwed up!

    If that were my daughter that was sexually assaulted, and the school allowed this boy to participate in a sporting event and she was told she could "sit out" for it, I would be holding up big "FU" signs.

  19. BTW, that girl has every right to make a fuss! Why should she be treated like a second class citizen next to a CONVICT?

  20. This is unbelievable. I grew up in Silsbee, Texas and had a good experience graduating from SHS. The victims mother was one of my best friends in high school and my prayers are with her and the family every day! This is like an episode from Friday Night Lights! Texas is all about their sports and the good 'ole boys. I cannot believe that the school was allowed to actually treat her this way. Her rights were taken from her a second time and the Superintendent just raped her all over again! How is it he can get off with probation for rape and then be allowed to play sports at school? Really? Are you freakin kidding me! I know these parents and the fact that dad kept from killing these boys is amazing to me! What an example he and mom have set with the support they have given their daughter. I say keep on going and make somone answer for the injustice that was served up by the Silsbee Independent School District! You see actual movies on Lifetime about this kind of crap but it is still shocking when it really happens!

    • DisgustedBy SHSCheer says:

      Bravo to you for countering some of the vile garbage posted by others claiming to also know the victim and the OFFENDERS, yet eviscerating the victim here in these comments. It's repugnant to see these people defending rapists, and it's good to see somebody from Silsbee who apparently doesn't subscribe to the mob mentality in place there.

    • Riley Frank says:

      Kim,

      Do not believe everything you read. This story is full of inaccuracies. If you would like the truth, why don't you ask someone unbiased. I work at the high school and have been through this whole mess and believe me when I tell you there is more to it than meets the eye.

      • Oh really, Riley Frank? And what's the truth, as you tell it? How is an employee of Silsbee High School "unbiased"? Although what most of these commenters aren't understanding is that Bolton and Rountree had not yet been indicted at the time they were allowed to return to school and so did have a right to return to school and resume their extracurricular activities, that doesn't change the fact that HS was raped and she had the right to resume the activities that she enjoyed and that made her happy. She had the right to try to move on with her life after this terrible act of violence was done to her. And being forced to cheer, "Go Rakheem!" is hardly therapeutic. Everyone knows sports are king in small-town Texas, and the reaction of the school district and high school officials are proof of that. So what's the truth, Riley? I'd like to know.

  21. Well it is a case of bad reporting. The young man was on the basketball team before and dismissed during the original charge. After he was cleared he was reinstated. Being unhappy with the verdict, the parents directed her not to cheer. She slipped off from her boyfriend at this party to” go have some fun”, even having one of the guys to phone video it. It wasn’t til her boyfriend came looking for her that this became a rape case. Where were her parents when she was out” underage drinking at 1am obviously un supervised. There is so much more to this story that has not been reported that it really paints a very skewed picture. Mr. Franco was not the Principal nor was he in the district at the time of all this.

  22. This type of miscarriage of justice is what breeds vigilantes. The rapists should have gotten the maximum as well as had been banned from going back to school where the victim was.

  23. There must surely be only a handful of words in the entire English language that can possibly convey the full depth of just how abhorrent the handling of this young lady's situation actually was. If anything, it serves as yet another perfect example of our society's continual swirl down the plughole of moral chaos. These "school administrators"- or, rather, infantile, hedonistic lunkheads – chose to venerate the ephemeral, masturbatory reality of the high school sporting world over the imperishable dignity of the individual human soul, and, for simultaneously elevating the former while debasing the latter, these retarded little Caesars deserve nothing but scorn.

    Would "Mr" Bain (quotes, because I don't consider him to be a man in any meaningful sense) force his own daughter to cheer for her rapist, if she had instead been raped ? To ask the question is to answer it.

  24. Mrs. C in TN says:

    The Silsbee Independent School District's website is available at http://silsbeeisd.org, in case you'd like more information. The site provides the direct phone # for the superintendent, which is actually 409-980-7824. However, I found an error on the home page when viewing the slogan "Putting our children first", since it appears to be missing the words "when they excel in sports". The district should probably work with the website designer to get that corrected right away.

    It's very jarring to discover that we've come full circle to the point that the troglodytes are in charge of public education again, nearly 40 years since the feminist movement began to take hold. I shudder to think of any other young women in communities throughout the U.S. that might have undergone the same experience without the publicity that this episode has received. We absolutely CANNOT sit back and let this happen to our daughters, nieces and granddaughters, not after all the obstacles we've knocked down to get to this point.

    Please be sure to belabor the following point to our young women … it is never OK for ANYONE to take advantage of them: not peers, not family members, not adults; no matter how they're dressed, or how much they've had to drink, or what other circumstances are in play. Use H.S.'s story as a teachable example of the correct way to respond if something like this happens – tell your parents and the police, press charges and follow through with them, and involve the media if justice is miscarried. I will fully expect my daughter to behave like H.S. if something like this happened to her, and her father and I would stand behind her every step of the way!

  25. SHSALUMNI says:

    What don't you people understand about the fact that Bolton did not plea guilty to ANY charge while he was attending Silsbee High School. So his "priveledge" to wear the jersey is justified. Its called INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY. None of you know what really happened, noone does but the people involved. And the "vicitim" has had nearly 20 different stories about what actually happened that night. None of you have the right to pass judgement on these boys. Your logic about her word being the only evidence she needed is ridiculous. So if I have ill will towards another person I can accuse them of rape and he is automatically guilty? That's not how the law works.

    • SHSALUMNI

      You need to stick to the story. A girl is alleging a boy raped her. Boy in question is allowed to continue playing the high school sport that creates interaction between them. Girl refuses to participate. 3rd party (the school) is shocked by her actions and removes her.

      Whether people assume this boy is guilty is beside the point.

    • Are you kidding me? says:

      We all have a right to be angry –

    • Mrs. C in TN says:

      SHSALUMNI,
      What don't YOU understand about the whole point of this story? The outrage from across the country has nothing to do with when Bolton pleaded guilty or how many stories the victim had – it is about the way the accuser was treated by school authorities in comparison to the accused! Do you seriously believe that refusing to cheer for a player at a rinky-dink high school game is a worse act than sexually assaulting one person and threatening another with gunfire?!
      Whether Bolton pleaded guilty while he was in school or 2 years later, the fact is that HE PLEADED GUILTY, which means HE WAS NEVER INNOCENT. The way the law actually works is that there had to have been more evidence than just 'her word', or Bolton's lawyer never would have taken the deal (which even Bolton says he felt was fair). He is guilty in the eyes of the law, and the school dropped the ball by punishing her and not him. Period.
      I hope the young man has learned his lesson and will never do this to another young woman.

    • victim support says:

      you either have an agenda or just a liar. considering how long this has been going on it would be safe to say she has told her story to several law enforcement officials…police report, grand jury, DA office, her attorney, and from reading these articles several media outlets….her story as you put it seems to be VERY consistant. Besides, if it werent, it would be a crime, falsifying police reports, lying under oath….etc all puishable by law. Being that hasnt happened……i say her STORY is quite consistant….by the way, its not "innocent until proven guilty" its " presumed" innocent until proven guilty……much much much different meaning.

    • Read the story again. He's not innocent, he plead guilty, because he was. He raped a girl and got a reduced sentence due to the fact that he had no record. It does not matter if he was attending the school or not, this piece of trash RAPED a girl, he's not innocent until proven guilty because he admitted he did it. It should not matter if it was his first crime, I don't care if he never had a ticket in his life, he should be in prison for a long long time. PROBATION, what a damn joke.

  26. I can't believe that a school in the US would perpetrate such a heinous wrong as this one. The girl that was raped had her right to say no grievously violated. Her story just punctuates the problem with putting atheletes on a pedestal a la Roethlisberger and Favre, the young sexual attackers in this story may go on to continue this behavior throughout their lives. Indeed, it is likely that they do committ more sexual assaults in the future. Thanks to the judge, the "justice" system, and all the other enablers in this story, young women in this country have more reasons to fear for their safety.

  27. IN TEXAS???!!??? Excuse me while I get some ice from hell…apparently it's frozen over…

  28. I don't know what to make of this case. It's so extreme that I want to rule out all the possibilities before I decide that the story we're told here is indeed the factually correct story.

    To be fair, rape is a crime that's extremely easy to accuse someone of and extremely difficult to prove. It's possible (some would say likely) this girl is just making it up, which is why the school is wise not to punish her supposed "rapist." Perhaps punishing her is a bit too harsh, though. Some might say, "He was charged with assault, and moreover he pled guilty, which means he was definitely guilty of some sexual wrongdoing at her expense. A judge said she wasn't making it up, so it's certainly not the job of the school to second-guess the judge." But people are REALLY credulous of rape claims in this society, and the guy may have pled guilty just to get an easier sentence, even though he didn't really do it, because he knew that if it's just his word against a woman's, the judge would take the woman's side every time, and he didn't want to risk the heavier sentence. Again, it's hard to tell whether or not he's even guilty, going only by the facts we're given. I even heard someone give the following (admittedly crude) interpretation of the facts: "She was probably white. I'm guessing that she got drunk at the house party, ended up screwing several black guys, and made up the rape story to try to cover up her shameful behavior. She used the typical racist sexual stereotype about black men to try to cover up her promiscuous behavior."

    Again, this is not my interpretation of the facts, because I don't know which interpretation is correct. I need more facts to decide which interpretation is most plausible.

    • oh people are really credulous of rape claims in this society? how terrible of us to stand up for its victims and reach out to them by at least trying to serve their perpetrators with justice! first off, the percentage of rapes that are made up falls somewhere between 2 and 4%, and with good reason: in our fantastically moral and just society, victims of rape are HIGHLY stigmatized. what girl would go through the trouble and torture of crying wolf on someone if it wasn't true? i know if it happened to me i'd have a hard time telling my parents (even though i know i shouldn't, because obviously i [and the victims] havent done anything wrong) and friends and having everyone in my town know that about me, so how much sense does it make for a girl to bring that on herself for something that isnt even true??

    • also, how can you even SUGGEST the race card/shameful behavior explanation??? even though you say it's not your interpretation of the facts, by bringing it up you are saying it is one possible explanation, indicating it has merit and isn't COMPLETELY FUCKED UP. you didn't point out that this is an incredibly degrading thought, you just said you weren't sure if it was correct, and that interpretation also brings up all kinds of feminist issues which i can't even get into right now for fear of wasting my breath on such an ignorant moron like you. btw, judges RARELY take the woman's side because evidence is hard to come by. people like you are the reasons more women suffer in silence or speak out and are persecuted for it. how dare you do anything EXCEPT applaud this brave young woman for her ability to stand up for herself when all odds are against her.

    • unfortunately, people rarely believe the victim. People can't believe that their son/brother/sister/friend could do something so horrendous. This is why so most sexual assaults/rapes go unreported. It is very obvious that what she is saying is true…they "fled through an open window" and left clothes behind…does that sound like the behaviour of someone who is innocent?
      I'm not saying it has never happened…but I can assure you that men and women do not go to the police just to ruin somebody's life when it is not true. It takes a lot of strength and courage to do so…because of people like you who tell them that they are making it up.

    • The man PLED DOWN TO CLASS A SEXUAL ASSAULT.

      You can quit trying to ruin the credibility of the victim now, thanks.

  29. I keep imagining how this case would be held in the public school I work for in the midwest. This wouldn't have been an issue, Rakheem would have been banned from all extra-curricular activities and embarrassed by the sudden lack of support from fellow classmates. I've seen worse happen to boys who "ass-grabbed" a girl. In my opinion it's all the same; any unwanted physical touching done by one student to another is completely out of line and deserves immediate action by the administration to insure safety of their students.

    Who are these shs alumni responding to their post? None of their stories are convincing me of anything.

  30. This school's administration should be ashamed of themselves for letting this student back in the school, and putting this girl in this situation in the first place.

  31. If she doesn't want her name to be leaked to the national media, I'd advise this girl to delete or adjust the privacy settings on her facebook immediately. Just by facebook stalking the people of this high school, it wasn't that hard at all for me to figure out who she is. The girl I found has H.S. as her initials, is currently 18, and has "cheerleading" listed as her primary interest. I assume that journalists and news reporters are at least as clever as I am.

    Also, ABC has just released another long news story on this girl in which the father's name is revealed to be "Craig S." The girl I found also has a father named Craig.

    Someone please tell her to either delete or enable privacy settings on her facebook.

  32. I understand this might be the equivalent of stepping into the proverbial lions den, still, those who may be inclined to perhaps view this from a different angle before shooting off at the hapless officials might want to consider another possibility:

    http://www.rantlust.com/manish/2010/10/27/ms-reporting/

    direct link (hopefully posting a link works)

    Best,

  33. The school district should fire the administrators that abused that brave girl. AND the district should PAY for her to go to a college of her choice so she could pursue any degree she chooses, be it a school of science or law. If I were the parents of those three boys, I would change the family names and leave town. The snowball effect of this story will bring down your whole family. Why should the younger siblings pay for the sins of their brothers?

  34. I'm disgusted by the people who seem to think that she is lying and believe she deserved to be kicked off of the squad. So you think she's lying?

    Why then, would he have threatened the owners of the house because they wouldn't return his clothing? And why would they leave through a window in order to avoid being caught in the act? Kids now a days are very proud and vocal about their sexual conquests, I don't believe that they would flee the scene to avoid their classmates knowing they had consensual sex with someone.

    Schools and administrative officials aren't supposed to operate based on their own beliefs, they're supposed to care about the children and their well being. Forcing her to see her attacker is bad enough, but trying to force her to cheer for a man who raped her is above and beyond horrible. The fact is, that school has an obligation to their students, and they failed that poor girl.

  35. I cannot believe this guy is still playing sport for the school, what arrogance and stupidity from the school to allow and obviously expect the victim to be "punished" for this jerk's crime

  36. I'm in Australia so please excuse my ignorance but I thought sports in America were considered a priviledge (judging by the amount of tv and movies that have the star quaterback struggling with getting the grades needed to stay on the team), surely this infringement of human rights should be enough to have that priviledge revoked?
    Also, in response to that commentor from the school who said that HS was allowed to passively squat but instead chose to turn her back I still don't get your point. She turned her back to him, she didn't pass out flyers calling him a criminal or bang pots and pans together (which personally I wouldn't fault her for). All she did was turn the other way, it sounds more like the guy's family caused the disturbance.

    • Obviously you've never heard of Kobe Bryant. He's still making millions of dollars and idolized by idiots after raping a woman. I guess if you can dunk there's a different standard for you.

    • You're right, Kayleigh, THEORETICALLY they are. Especially when you're in school, and expected to follow a code of conduct regarding your fellow students. You might want to refer back to the comments, in this case, where it is said along the lines that authority figures tend to look the other way involving the conduct of school and professional athletes. The fact that you're commenting on this from an international perspective makes me ashamed that this happened in the United States, and made news that represents the United States, which is supposedly a stronghold for human rights.
      At my high school, one year after I'd graduated, there were a couple of boys a year below me who made crank calls to faculty figures one night at a party. Nothing threatening, but offensive. There was another boy who was nearby (and who later related this story to me) who did not participate, but made no effort to stop the other two. All three of these strong theater department participants were banned from the upcoming musical. Just for that. This leaves me wondering why these pigs were allowed not only to still attend school, but also play sports and receive glory as they always did, after they did the unthinkable to defenseless young woman who is now being told to lay low, as if SHE were the perpetrator. It's shameful and embarrassing to anyone whom this story represents, if by nothing else but being a citizen of the United States.

    • Meghan Wolf says:

      Another thing is that HS suffers the punishment of anyone who dares to butt heads with those who outdo her in notoriety and, therefore, influence. Supposedly, sports participation is a privilege to the law-abiding, appropriately-conducted athlete, but when sports are made a god, so is he.

  37. This makes me sick! As a singing superheroine and disability rights activist, I am very shocked and appalled that these cruel grownups are blaming the victim, just for being raped.
    If that happened to a person with a disability, I would be so mad that I would not only hunt down the bad people who did this, but also make the cruel grownups pay for violating the disabled child's right to go to school in the least restrictive environment, under the American Special Education Laws, The Americans With Disabilities Act, The Pardon of The Disabled, aka The Olmstead Act and for violating the Federal Hate Crimes Act of 2009, which made disabaphobia a Federal Hate Crime!

  38. Concerned says:

    I think the behavior of the school administrators is despicable. However, why do I have to include my street address on the petition in order to sign it? The fact that my city and state is not enough makes me suspicious that I am going to end up on a mailing list for signing it, so I won't. This requirement is likely losing support for your efforts, if they are sincere in the first place.

  39. The folks who are asking why this heathen is still playing are right on track! If the facts reported are correct, then this is just one more example of how far America has fallen in the morals department. The jerk should be in prison, not playing BB for a school who just wants to keep their score cards high. The very idea is disgusting. Maybe we should take sports out of schools and let our kids gain knowledge and maybe throw in a class on how to act & they might actually have a chance to be included in 'decent society'.

  40. what is that school thinking? have they no heart?
    a GIRL GETS SEXUALLY ASSAULTED and she gets kicked off the squad for not wanting to cheer for the pervert who did it.
    I wouldn't want him to do well either.
    Is high school football that really that important to the school district…Im at a lose for words.This should never have happened.

  41. Anonymous says:

    Women can't feel rape.

    But your school can feel your lack of school spirit. Especially during game day.

    In fact, one might say that not cheering during school sports pretty much is rape. The real kind of rape.

    • What crap are you talking about? Women can't feel rape? I really hope you're being sarcastic. How is not cheering during school sports rape? =.=

  42. Do convicted rapists deserve this kind of accolade? Do they deserve to be cheered? I don't care how joking H.S. was sexually assaulted, how much they were kidding around. A rapist deserves time behind bars. The innocent should not have to suffer for the recklessness of the guilty.

    • Remember the case of Alex Kelly? There's a tradition of letting star atheletes get away with rape – and with the community support this guy is getting, he is highly likely to do it again.

  43. once again its another violent act gone unpunished in our public school system…..kiss ur kids before they go to school because they are not SAFE!!!! or PROTECTED!!!!!!ALTHOUGH this didn't happen at school, i'm pretty sure he shouldn't be playing sports if he's in trouble with THE LAW!!!!! SHE IS THE VICTIM, not the boy/boys or the coach that didn't bench him so his team could rack up some more points…how very sad that ADULTS set no example in our public schools……so much for school spirti how can u have that when ur educators have no school STANDARDS!!!!

    • Elizabeth says:

      And where are the parents? I would NEVER allow my son to continue with extra-curricular activities after that. He'd go to classes, make restitution, and work at home – NO FOOTBALL!!!

  44. Just another reason why most of the people I know who are having kids do or plan to home school

  45. Folks,

    We're talking about TEXAS here!

    Frankly, I'm shocked anyone is even surprised.

  46. That poor girl. the story has not been reported here in the Uk and i only found the story on youtube dr. david duke videos. I pray that good will prevail.

  47. TXmom_notclueless says:

    I live in Texas. My son had a kitchen knife in his book bag that he brought to school without thinking (for one of his classes) and ended up in a juvenile detention school for six weeks. HE didn't threaten anyone, harm anyone, and wasn't even accused of harming anyone. But for just having a knife, he got booted out.

    Why isn't this guy in a juvenile detention school? Is it just because ya'll over in Silsbee suck so much at basketball that he's only one of five kids who even knows how to play?

    A juvenile detention school is still a public school. So he would still be allowed the education he's entitled to. The fact that parents are comfortable with a confessed rapist being in the same school as their daughter troubles me, but the fact that the school is comfortable with the liability they might face as a result is even more troubling.

    • He's not in jail because he is a sports star. That's a get-out-of-jail free card. In Texas, people are so queer for high school sports that they can let anything go, even the rape of their daughters, if it improves their chances in a game. This girl certainly "took one for the team," and that's just fine for most of these slobbering sports-addicted fools. Not true? Then why isn't this piece of crap hanging from a tree instead of from the rim of a basketball hoop? Why did the PTA not shut down the school with protests when this violent predator was allowed back into the school, let alone back on the basketball court? It's a simple matter of priorities.

  48. I am from Houston, Texas and take my word for it sports are king. Anything to protect an athlete. If they were innocent why jump out the window. A girl would be up a creek without a paddle against any kind of athlete. Why were there 3 boys and why was the door locked.

    Because in Texas athletes get what they want and when they want it.

  49. Why did they go out through a window? Jose needs to check himself!

  50. Rape apologism in the form of coercing a woman to literally cheer for a man who has assaulted her in the most violating, life-altering, soul-shattering way imaginable is not only despicable, it's indicative that the individuals responsible for abusing their authority as officials and elders to shame and further injure this young woman should be immediately fired for their lack of sensitivity and clear inability to make sound judgments on behalf of the people they are supposedly meant to protect.

    By the way, just because it's Texas doesn't mean this sort of thing doesn't happen all over the country or that we should become desensitized and refuse to allow ourselves to be surprised when human beings lose all sense of decency and prey on innocent people; frankly, it's surprising as fuck to me every time it happens.

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