LAWRENCE TOWNSHIP, N.J. (CBS) — Police say video on social media helped lead them to the arrest of two Lawrence Township High School seniors in connection with a hate crime. Video obtained by Eyewitness News shows the moments leading up to the alleged incident at the Lawrence High School homecoming game on Friday night.
Police say two 17-year-old seniors used racially derogatory names against several younger students. Some victims may also have been urinated on.
Lawrence Township Police Chief Brian Caloiaro said Mayor Chris Bobbitt had contacted him the night of the alleged incident, Oct. 18, asking if he had heard about anything bias in nature that may have occurred at the football game. But nothing had been reported.
The next morning the chief says he woke up to an email from the mayor, with a link to a Facebook page.
“I clicked on the link to the Facebook page and I noticed there was a very inflammatory Facebook post from a victim — the victim’s mother — about what had happened the night before at the high school,” Caloiaro said. “Basically, what the post stated was that her daughter and a bunch of eighth-grade friends at the high school football game were ridiculed and mocked by upperclassmen and called the n-word. She also made reference that there was urination that occurred on one of the eighth-grade students.”
Two 17-year-old boys were charged in connection with the incident. They have been released to the custody of their parents and will appear in juvenile court at a later date.
Police said they are still actively investigating this case and additional charges may be filed against other suspects.