How reports on the assault of a 13-year-old Norwood boy by three older Norwood boys in February at the State Wrestling Tournament in Denver divided the community is The Watch’s No. 10 story.
In April, officials with the Denver Police Department confirmed the department was “actively” investigating charges that Norwood students were involved in a sexual assault in Denver during the Feb. 16-18 State Wrestling Tournament, sending officers to Norwood High School April 10 for interviews with students and staff about the incident. “The investigation is ongoing, and that’s where we’re at,” said the department's Public Information Officer John White, adding that the department would not release more information, in part “because minors are involved.”
The investigation lead the Denver District Attorney’s Office to file charges on Friday, April 27, against the three boys, ranging in age from 14 to 16, with second-degree kidnapping, sexual assault and false imprisonment.
The three juveniles were charged with unlawful seizure and transport of the victim from one place to another, and the infliction of sexual intrusion for the purpose of abuse.
While the three awaited trial, the allegations against them divided the Norwood community. In May, a group of students sporting “Team TTH” T-shirts – the initials of the three assailants now facing felony charges in Denver – were told to remove them at the annual end-of-the-school-year barbecue.
“The T-shirt incident occurred Friday,” said Darryl Farrington, the Norwood School District’s Denver-based attorney. “School officials made sure the T-shirts were removed, and have prohibited any student from wearing them in the future.”
The juvenile process for the three suspects moved forward, with the two older boys (now `6 and 17) pleading guilty to third-degree misdemeanor assault in August, with sentencing in September, both to two years of probation, 50 hours of community service and joint pyment of restitution.
In December, the third assailant, now 15, avoided trial by pleading guilty to a misdemeanor count of sexual contact/no consent, and was sentenced to ongoing probation, 50 hours of community service, participation in a victim empathy class and “boundaries” group, and joint payment of restitution. The restitution, ordered by the judge, goes to the Crime Victim Compensation program and to reimburse the victim’s family for out-of-pocket expenses.