The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

February 6, 2014

Coach charged in Lakeside bullying case

Jerry Brady faces two counts of contributing to delinquency of minor

JEFFERSON — The Ashtabula County Prosecutor’s Office has filed charges against Lakeside High School Varsity Wrestling Coach Jerry Brady for his alleged involvement in a recently bullying incident.

Brady is being charged with two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor after he allegedly witnessed an assault on school property and did nothing to stop it. The charges were filed Wednesday in Ashtabula County Juvenile Court, said County Prosecutor Nick Iarocci.

Brady has been on paid administrative leave following the Jan. 21 assault of a 16-year-old male student by a 17-year-old member of the wrestling team.

The victim was reportedly beaten in the face and head 25 to 30 times, and had to be taken to Ashtabula County Medical Center for treatment of his injuries. The incident revolved around a gym bag.

According to an Ashtabula County Sheriff’s Department report, the victim was approached by four members of the varsity wrestling team following a junior high wrestling match. One of the wrestlers questioned him about being in possession of a Lakeside wrestling gym bag.

The victim told Deputy Scott Slocum he saw Brady in the area when he told the wrestler he couldn’t have the bag. The wrestler tried to pull it away, so the victim punched him once in the face, according to the report.

The wrestler then began punching the victim repeatedly in the face and head, according to the report.

After viewing the video surveillance footage of the incident, Slocum, the school’s resource officer, wrote in his report that the victim was “viciously attacked.”

Several witness who were questioned about the incident told Slocum a referee yelled out for the wrestler to stop, but Brady told him to keep going because the victim threw the first punch, according to the report.

The wrestler was arrested on charges of attempted robbery and assault.

According to the Sheriff’s report, Brady told Slocum he didn’t want to get involved because he had an injured shoulder.

Brady had a pre-disciplinary hearing Tuesday with Ashtabula Area City School District Superintendent Patrick Colucci. The Board of Education has called a special meeting for today at 6 p.m. The board will meet in executive session to discuss the internal investigation.

Colucci said he doesn’t expect the board to take any action following the executive session.

Colucci declined to make a statement regarding the charges, other than to say the district is still conducting its internal investigation.

Brady is set to be arraigned on the charges on March 11.

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