Editor's Note: The following editorial by News and Sentinel of Colebrook Publisher Karen Harrigan initially ran in that newspaper last week. It reflects, as only that hometown newspaper could, on the...
MOLTONBOUROUGH— An alleged hazing event last month at a local camp did not involve any New Hampshire residents, police said.
High school football players from Chelmsford, Mass., were said to be involved in the incident last month at Camp Robindel at 81 Geneva Point Road, police said.
Nat Greenfield of Meadowbrook, Pa., said he and his wife Ann own the camp, which has been the summer home of girl campers since 1951. The girls’ camp runs from June 22 to July 28, and after that the couple rents the 75-acre property to other groups, Greenfield said.
“Allegedly it happened on our property, but we don’t know anything about it,” he said. “We have lots of renters on that property at various times.”
All of those said to be involved in the incident, which happened on or about Aug. 23, are minors and no other details are being released, pending the investigation, authorities said.
Detective Stephen Kessler and school resource Officer Jody Baker are handling the investigation and being assisted by Chelmsford police.
Pinkerton Academy’s longtime football coach Brian O’Reilly said his school hasn’t held preseason football camps since 1983.
“I know we don’t do it,” O’Reilly said. “We don’t go away at all.”
O’Reilly said he didn’t know anything about the alleged Chelmsford incident.
“We preach against hazing now in high schools,” O’Reilly said. “You can’t even give kids haircuts. I don’t want, at our team dinners, kids coming with mohawks, with bizarre haircuts, unless they somehow did it themselves.”
He said school officials may encounter problems by running camps away from home or sponsoring overnight trips.
“When you go on school trips and kids are bunked up at night and adults don’t see what’s going on, I think you are just asking for trouble, I really do,” he said.
Concord athletic director Steve Mello said his football program attends Camp Winaukee in Moultonborough for pre-season workouts. Windham, Spaulding and Somersworth also attend Camp Winnaukee.
“We take hazing very seriously,” Mello said. “We have a written policy that every coach at our school addresses about what is acceptable and what is not acceptable. We take every precaution through good supervision from our coaches.”