No proof of racial slurs before Linden player hit opponent with helmet, NJSIAA says
The NJSIAA has found no evidence racial epithets were spoken during a Linden-Immaculata game before a Linden player to hit an opponent in the head with his helmet.
NJSIAA Executive Director Steven J. Timko said in a statement released Friday "initial reports provided by both schools have found nothing to substantiate any allegations of harassment related to race, as alleged by one parent. As per our rules, we have notified the state's Division of Civil Rights regarding the claims, and have supplied our initial findings."
During a press conference with Anita McDow, the mother of Linden player Fritz Monicon's mother, community activist Dondi Givens Jr. told CBS New York that racial comments were made during the Sept. 11 game and that the Immaculta player who Moncion struck had speared him in the stomach earlier in the game.
Timko said NJSIAA rules require players be read a script explaining the harassment prohibition in the NJSIAA's sportsmanship rule.
“NJSIAA can confirm that players participating in the game in question were read our harassment policy," wrote Timko. "Following lengthy discussions with both schools — as well as with the football officials association — we believe that to-date, the schools are handling the matter appropriately."
The NJSIAA will continue to monitor the situation and interject "if we deem it necessary," wrote Timko. The junior varsity teams from Linden and Immaculata played on the Monday after the varsity game without incident, according to Timko, with "handshakes all around" at game's end.
Timko said that the NJSIAA plans on bringing together the captains of both teams to "help ensure the tradition of good sportsmanship between these longtime rival schools."
Monicon remains suspended from school as Linden School Superintendent continues to pursue the "severest disciplinary action possible," the school has said. The Union County Prosecutor's Office is still reviewing the evidence and tells New Jersey 101.5 that no charges have been filed.