MCALESTER schools settle lawsuit filed by parent

Monday, August 13th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

MCALESTER, Okla. (AP) _ The McAlester school district has settled a lawsuit filed by a parent whose son was beaten by seven football players in a school locker room.

The terms of the settlement were not released.

Don Warnock sued the school district after his son, Matthew Warnock, was severely beaten after a weight training class on Jan. 7, 1999. He sought more than $100,000 for pain and anguish and as compensation for permanent, progressive and disabling injuries to his son.

Warnock, a junior at the time, said he was knocked unconscious twice during the assault.

Seven students were suspended for three days after the incident.

The Warnocks' lawsuit claimed school officials were aware of previous ritualistic hazing incidents. The lawsuit said students had been hurt before and those injuries had been reported to school officials.

Attorneys representing the school denied the claim

Dr. Lucy Smith, superintendent for McAlester Public Schools, said she and other school officials had heard rumors of initiation-type incidents with new members of the football team, but they never had any proof.

Don Warnock said the two parties agreed to keep the settlement details confidential.