DANVERS (WBZNewsRadio) - The Massachusetts Attorney General's office is investigating the response of school leaders in Danvers over allegations of violent, racist, homophobic and antisemitic behavior by it's high school boys hockey team.
The attorney general's office confirmed to the Boston Globe that after a preliminary review of the allegations, the office has now launched a formal investigation. Simultaneously, the North Shore NAACP has called for changes in the Police Department over it's role in the controversy. The organization has recommended the head hockey coach at the time, Danvers Police Sergeant Stephen Baldassare, be reassigned from supervising the town's school resource officers.
Danvers Schools Superintendent, Lisa Dana, has been on medical leave since December, after allegations surfaced that she withheld the abuse allegations from the public, with the school board's backing. Since then, her duties have been handled by assistant superintendents Keith Taverna and Mary Wermers.
The Globe reports the initial investigation into the team found a weekly locker room hazing that turned physical. There was also offensive language reportedly exchanged via group text referencing the Holocaust and mocking an image of a Black Danvers High student, suggesting he was being lynched.
This isn't the first instance of hateful behavior from Danvers High students. In December 2021, the Danvers High wrestling team was suspended after the school became aware of a video depicting a fight from three years prior involving two students.
WBZ's Jim MacKay (@JimMacKayOnAir) reports