COAL TOWNSHIP — The mother of an 18-year-old Shamokin Area High School student accused on social media of attacking a female student during school, an incident that is under investigation by Coal Township police, is claiming her son is not a “monster” as portrayed by the public.
A Facebook post made midday on “Shamokin/Coal Township Crime and Reporting and Discussion” by user Teddie Ted claims her son’s “chances, opportunities and future” are being “snatched away” by an inaccurate portrayal of the incident.
Coal Township police confirmed Friday that Detective Matthew Hashuga is investigating an alleged attempted sexual assault at Shamokin Area Middle/High School that occurred at approximately 10:30 a.m. Nov. 2. No charges have been filed.
The incident was made public Thursday when Sheila Ebersole posted details of the alleged incident against her daughter. Ebersole expressed concerns and claimed police have video evidence of the incident, adding that it involved an 18-year-old male student “grabbing her daughter and trying to pull her down a stairwell” and into a basement area in order to force her to perform a sex act.
The accused’s mother responded Saturday by stating that her son did admit to “grabbing” the victim by an arm in a “playing manner” and does not take issue with her son possibly being charged with simple assault, harassment and disorderly conduct because the act “is on tape;” however, she feels the public labeling her son as a “monster” and “predator” is defamation of character and inaccurate.
“No one but the detective heard my son’s side of things. Everyone went off of the accuser’s words and never once stopped and trusted the system,” she posted. “Well, the cops investigated and the school was allowing him back (to school) so maybe, just maybe, it was not what they are making it out to be.”
Shamokin Area Middle/High School Principal Todd Hockenbroch stated in a press release Friday that although the district cannot get into specifics about student discipline, in regards to the issue at hand, local law enforcement and parents of both students were contacted immediately after the district became aware of the issue.
School board member Charles Shuey stated Friday that the student in question received a suspension and continues to serve it, pending the outcome of an investigation of all allegations.
The accused’s mother added, “My son is not a monster. He is a teenager, who like the rest (of us) make bad choices … The school has to protect all parties involved, but if that’s the case, why are all parties involved not receiving the same consequences? Because there is a rule that says innocent until proven guilty.”