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No criminal charges in Mouat basketball hazing incident

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The Edmonton Police Service (EPS) is not pursuing criminal charges in the hazing incident involving the W.J. Mouat Secondary senior boys basketball team.

EPS spokesperson Scott Pattison told The News that the investigation is now closed.

"It appears the complainants have withdrawn their concerns," he said, declining further comment on the matter since charges were not laid.

"It was a very preliminary investigation on our end."

The incident occurred while the Mouat Hawks were in Edmonton for a tournament at St. Francis Xavier high school, Dec. 5-7. Seven athletes were subsequently suspended for what head coach Rich Ralston termed "very poor decision-making," and the EPS opened a preliminary investigation with involvement from the sex crime unit.

Last week, the seven players had their school suspensions lifted following a review process, and Abbotsford school district communications manager Dave Stephen told The News that "some of the reports that were out on social media were quite exaggerated."

“What we discovered was that each of the students recognized and they acknowledged that the behaviour was inappropriate," he said.

"Everyone wanted to move forward, including the victims and the parents. We believe we came to the right conclusion.”

The Abbotsford Police Department assisted Edmonton with the investigation, handling interviews of the individuals involved.

"It's our understanding that the matter has been resolved without engaging any criminal options . . . with all of the disciplinary measure co-ordinated through the school district," Const. Ian MacDonald said.

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