5th Student Alleges Hazing at Maine West

Soccer team, with its new coach, scheduled to play its first game Monday night

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    NEWSLETTERS

    In a lawsuit filed Monday in Cook County, the boy, now 16, claims the attack happened behind the bleachers on the soccer team's practice field in September of last year. Rob Stafford reports. (Published Monday, Aug 26, 2013)

    A fifth boy has come forward alleging he was sexually assaulted by his soccer teammates at Maine West High School in northwest suburban Des Plaines.

    In a lawsuit filed Monday in Cook County, the boy, now 16, claims the attack happened behind the bleachers on the soccer team's practice field in September of last year. The school district and two coaches knew of the hazing and did nothing to stop it, the lawsuit alleges.

    Two coaches were terminated after students came forward and claimed they were attacked by older members of the team. The students said the attacks included having their shorts or pants forcibly removed and having their buttocks poked with hands and other objects.

    Some of the hazing attacks may have happened as early as 2006, an attorney said last year.

    The former head coach, Michael DiVinceno, was charged in May with three counts of battery and four counts of failure to report abuse as mandated, all Class A misdemeanors. DiVinceno's attorneys said the former coach did nothing wrong.

    The alleged victim in the latest case declined to be publicly identified, but his mother offered advice as students return to school.

    "Look for behavioral changes in your child. Let them know it is OK to speak up," she said.

    Officials from Maine Township High School District 207 said Monday afternoon that it had not seen the lawsuit and declined to comment.

    DiVinceno is due back in court on October 15. The soccer team, with its new coach, was scheduled to play its first game Monday  night.