KINGFISHER, Okla. (KFOR) – The Kingfisher School Board voted unanimously Wednesday to reject a settlement offer of $1.5 million for the federal lawsuit regarding alleged hazing, bullying and physical and sexual assault within the Kingfisher High School football program.
The lawsuit involves the district and multiple coaches. The meeting went directly into executive session for about two hours. That was after the board voted to move the meeting to the high school cafeteria to accommodate attendees.
“I move that the board of education authorize its attorneys to notify plaintiff’s counsel that the board of education is rejecting the settlement offer at $1.5 million,” said Charles Walker, a Kingfisher School Board member, when the board came back from executive session.
“It’ll just be no comment,” said Daniel Craig, superintendent for Kingfisher Public Schools.
KFOR first brought you parent allegations in August of 2020. A bull in the ring drill allegedly left a child so beaten that he had to be helped off the field.
“They said that he was being too big of a p**** and he needed to toughen up,” said an anonymous parent in August of 2020 after the incident allegedly happened.
The lawsuit, though, reveals other abusive situations, allegedly with the coach’s full knowledge. It comes with a trigger warning for graphic information, including a child being whipped with frayed and sometimes knotted and wet towels in the shower until he bled. The news of the allegations has reached far and wide.
“Those boys ought to be justified for what’s happened all these years,” said Maryann Kretchmar, a concerned citizen who heard of the allegations.
“I think it’s a shame for the children; it hurts the program, it hurts the school, it hurts the faculty and it hurts our educational system,” said Sue McMillan, another concerned citizen who heard of the allegations.
The lawsuit also claims a Taser was used on the child and that he was shot by paintball and pellet guns at close range. It also alleges the coach’s laughed and never disciplined the attackers. The victim was left with welts and in pain. The lawsuit also alleges the child received threatening messages, including death threats, from other players. His attorney sent a statement to KFOR regarding the board’s vote Wednesday afternoon.
“We are surprised that Kingfisher has rejected our generous settlement offer. However, we are pleased that we have the opportunity to bring to the public’s attention more revelations,” said Cameron Spradling, the victim’s attorney.
“Nobody’s a winner in anything like this,” McMillan said.
Earlier this week we heard from one of the now-former coach’s attorneys, who denied any wrongdoings from his client. An OSBI and State Department of Education investigation are ongoing. A status and scheduling conference for the lawsuit is scheduled for early April.