Clyde-Savannah teens back in court, rescheduled for February

Clyde-Savannah teens back in court, rescheduled for February

The News10NBC Team details breaking News, Traffic and Weather.

LYONS, N.Y. – Three of the four Clyde-Savannah High School teenagers were back in Wayne County Court Wednesday morning. The football players are accused of brutally assaulting a 14-year-old teammate in the boy’s locker room before practice on Halloween.

Court was quickly adjourned and rescheduled for next month, as all three defense lawyers submitted a motion to review the grand jury minutes. This means they requested that Judge Richard Healy review the minutes to determine if the charges brought against their clients are indeed worth bringing to trial.

Healy said he’d been ready to decide Wednesday, but after a lengthy pretrial conversation with lawyers on both sides, he agreed to review again and decide at a later date.

The three teens — aged 17, 16, and 15 — are accused of felony sexual abuse, misdemeanor hazing, and misdemeanor forcible touching. A fourth boy — 15 at the time of the alleged assault — was accused of unlawful surveillance. His case is playing out in Family Court, where his records are sealed to the public.

Defense lawyer Michael Schiano said their goal is to get Judge Healy to reduce or drop some of the charges — specifically, the felony charge. 

 “All the clients are charged will felonies and misdemeanors we believe that no felony really exists in this case,” Schiano said. “Misdemeanors are the only thing that really exist at the end of the day. And I think that’s going to come to fruition in terms of the result of this case.”

The prosecution asked the motion to review be thrown out, and that the charges remain what they are. District Attorney Christine Callanan said this is a standard request from a defense team.

The defendants have been suspended from school for the rest of the year, and are being tutored at home. The victim has since returned to school, according to Callanan. 

“He’s doing as well as can be expected,” Callanan said. “This is not something that I think any child would ever want to be known for. No one wants to be labeled as a victim. He’s doing his best to move forward and just live a normal life. And if that’s the outcome of this — that he can get back to just being a child and enjoy his high school experience — I think that would be the best outcome for everyone.”

The three teens will return to court on February 2. Judge Healy is expected to give a decision on those charges that day. After that, Callanan said we will have a better picture of what kind of sentencing the boys may be facing.

“Everyone should remember that these are children that are involved,” Callanan stressed. “I understand that the speculation, the rumors that are going on in this community has caused for people to have strong feelings and responses. And I respect that, and I understand it. But at the end of the day — these are children and should be treated as such […] Regardless of whether you fall on this or what rumors you’ve heard or what you believe, everyone should remember that everyone involved are children and treat them that way.”