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09-18-06 Girls report assault at Celina game

By Margie Wuebker

  Celina Police continue to investigate an incident that occurred in the stands during the Shawnee-Celina football game Friday night.

  A 16-year-old girl and two friends, all juniors at Shawnee High School, reportedly went into the Bulldog stands during the third quarter to speak with acquaintances.

  The trio, attired in Shawnee shirts, immediately drew taunts from the high school cheering section. Some girls allegedly threw punches while a group of boys allegedly hit the visitors over the head with safety cones being used as megaphones.

  "My daughter went into the stands to get cousins who were driving home with her," Chrissy Phillips told The Daily Standard this morning. "The only thing they did wrong was wearing Shawnee shirts."

  The girl's Celina relatives witnessed the altercation and the teenagers immediately reported the assault to high school Principal Curt Shellabarger.  He determined none of them had been hurt and indicated the matter would be dealt with Monday.

  Phillips called her daughter on a cell phone about that time and noticed labored breathing. She immediately drove to her hometown and also confronted Shellabarger demanding that something be done immediately.

  "My daughter has a heart condition," Phillips added. "She was pushed or shoved down the stairs and could have been hurt. They made a mistake but they certainly did not deserve such treatment."

  A police officer took four reports at the scene and accompanied the girls back into the stands to point out the responsible parties. They reportedly were unable to do so but later spotted three girls standing by the fence who allegedly had been involved in the assault.

  Chief Dave Slusser said no independent eyewitnesses have been found as yet, although officers continue to check out names of possible suspects provided by the Phillips girl's relative.

  Celina Superintendent Matt Miller told the newspaper the investigation currently rests with police.

  "I have been in contact with school administrators in both districts," Slusser said. "The investigation is ongoing but at some point we will probably turn everything over to the schools."

  He admitted the "rumor mill" has been working overtime since Friday night.

  This is not the first incident of problems at a football game. A stone thrown by an unknown person injured a Van Wert football player a week ago. The player was seated on the team bench at the time.

  That incident also remains under investigation.


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