'Charlie Rape Gang' pupils face school discipline panel

The five boys who called themselves the “Charlie Rape Gang” didn’t receive significant additional punishment when they appeared Wednesday at a Columbia County school disciplinary hearing, but they still face charges in Juvenile Court.

The Lakeside Middle School pupils were accused in February of surrounding other pupils and simulating sex acts while clothed. All five were suspended for the remainder of the week, which kept them out of school over the Presidents Day holiday weekend, and referred to the system’s hearing officer.

During their disciplinary hearings Wednesday, hearing officer John Padgett upheld the recommendation from Juvenile Court Judge Douglas Flanagan that two of the boys with histories of school discipline problems be expelled, said Columbia County school Superintendent Charles Nagle.

“We honored Judge Flanagan’s recommendation to suspend them the remainder of this school year and the first semester of next year,” Nagle said. “They were given the option of going to the county alternative school.”

The other three boys did not have histories of school disciplinary problems, Nagle said, and were given additional days of in-school suspension, though he did not immediately know how many.

The five boys still face a charge of simple battery in Juvenile Court. A court official said Wednesday that a hearing date has not yet been set.

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