Charges were filed against a group of local high school students accused in what many are calling a serious sex crime.
» Sign Up For Breaking News Alerts» Like Us On Facebook
On Friday, the San Diego County District Attorney's Office said the Castle Park High School students linked to the sexual assault of a football player will be tried as juveniles.
Students told 10News the school has received negative attention over the incident, and they are doing what they can to boost morale.
A source with knowledge of the incident told 10News "the kid had been told to put a pencil up his rectum and it was hit further in by another student's binder, that's what happened."
Castle Park High football player Hector Garcia said, "It was a prank that turned out to be surprising and I guess they took it a little too far. When I'm in the locker room, I never see any of this stuff happen."
Garcia, a backup quarterback on the freshman team, said he hangs out with many of the varsity players. He told 10News he knows the victim in the case and believes the incident was not an act of hazing.
Student Estevan Ramirez said, "[It] had nothing to do with a hazing ... it was just acts of immaturity ... and, you know, kids doing wrong things."
Ramriez, the president of the school's Gay/Straight Alliance, has been leading the charge by going around with other campus groups and spreading words of encouragement and writing anti-hate and anti-bullying messages in chalk.
Ramirez views the incident as very serious, but also feels it's something that's been blown out of proportion.
"As far as what I've heard they were friends ... all these guys were friends. Why would a friend do that to another friend? I don't know," said Ramirez. "The consequences have to be faced ... they chose to do the wrong things and they have to face what happens."
While many students told 10News the incident was blown out of proportion, many parents are furious with Castle Park High School Principal Virginia Sandoval-Johnson for not taking the matter seriously.
Sandoval-Johnson recently drew criticism after downplaying the incident and calling it "horseplay that went too far."
Copyright Do you have more information about this story? Click here to contact usCopyright 2011 by 10News.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.