De La Salle parent tells police his son was hazing victim
Warren Police Commissioner William Dwyer said Wednesday a parent has come forward to report his son was victimized in an alleged October 2019 hazing incident at Warren De La Salle Collegiate High School.
The new complaint comes less than 24 hours after St. Clair County Prosecutor Michael D. Wendling announced a criminal investigation into allegations regarding the varsity football team at the all-boys Catholic school had been stalled due to the lack of cooperation from school officials, victims and families.
“A father of one of the students called us this morning quite upset after hearing that nothing was being done about the allegations,” said Dwyer. “I don’t have details about it but he indicated he would be filing a report with us. We will investigate it and also turn it over to St. Clair Prosecutor Wendling for consideration of possible criminal charges, if any.”
“I have talked to the prosecutor and he said he will be glad to review any additional complaints,” Dwyer said. “We’re hoping that this might be the first of several people who will reconsider having remained silent over some serious allegations.”
Wendling did not immediately return a call for comment Wednesday.
In a statement released Tuesday, Wendling said “while we are confident that a criminal incident did occur we do not have admissible evidence to move forward with prosecution.” Wendling said that by the time school officials contacted Warren police, “important evidence had already been lost or destroyed.
Wendling said school officials had also withheld documents and reports from investigators on “advice of legal counsel.”
Dwyer said school officials, like other professionals, are mandated to report criminal behavior to police, especially involving the safety and welfare of students.
“We need to get to the bottom of all of this to not only protect those students but also to make sure something like this doesn’t happen again,” he said.
The matter would normally be reviewed by the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office but it recused itself due to a perceived conflict of interests. A child of one of the assistant prosecutors attends the school.
Wendling’s office was selected by the Michigan Attorney General’s Office to handle the case. Wendling said his investigators had attempted to reinterview several people connected to the incident but like Warren detectives, had found them to be uncooperative.