Vermilion High School officials deserve applause from the bleachers for suspending a football player from the varsity team after the student athlete was convicted of gross sexual imposition.
The 17-year-old had sex with an 18-year-old girl without her consent in May 2007 after the two had consumed shots of vodka and rum, according to a police report. The boy was convicted of the crime on June 30 of this year in Lorain County Juvenile Court and was placed on probation.
Upon learning of the conviction, the student athlete -- who was already practicing with the varsity team -- was immediately suspended.
While its admirable that football coach Frank Horvath said the boy "remains a part of the team" while he sits on the sidelines, we can only hope the victim of his crimes has the same support from her peers at school.
It would have been easy for school officials to look the other way since the incident happened outside of school and our justice system has already punished the crime. However, taking a stand and sending a message to all student athletes that there are consequences to your actions and some of those consequences could mean the forfeiture of extra-curricular school activities is an important lesson that needs to be heeded.
We hope that both the player and the victim, and their families, can put this incident behind them, learn from it and get the continued support and guidance they both need.