The attorney for a former Wheaton College football player who authorities say was the victim of a hazing by five other players turned over his client’s medical records to a DuPage County judge Wednesday.
The records were sought by attorneys representing the five players, who are charged with aggravated battery and other crimes. But Terry Ekl, attorney for the ex-player, said the defense attorneys were “trying to create an issue that doesn’t exist.”
Authorities allege the five players injured the other player during a hazing incident in March 2016. The other player has since left Wheaton College.
At a court appearance last month, defense attorneys requested the medical records of the former player, who authorities say suffered shoulder injuries during the alleged incident. Evidence of a pre-existing injury could bolster the case for the accused players — Kyler Kregel, Noah Spielman, Samuel TeBos, Benjamin Pettway and James Cooksey.
At a hearing Wednesday, Ekl gave the records over to Judge Brian Telander.
“We’re willing to turn these over because they don’t show anything,” Ekl said afterward. “There’s no pre-existing shoulder injury.”
The judge will inspect the medical records and then share anything deemed relevant with the defense attorneys.
Meanwhile, attorney Paul Moreschi, who represents one of the players, asked the court to allow him to subpoena a dozen other people or organizations that had contact with the player who was allegedly hazed.
Assistant State’s Attorney Mike Pawl asked for additional time to review the defense request to see whether prosecutors would seek to object. The judge set a status date for March 21.
The five players are accused of aggravated battery, unlawful restraint and mob action. Authorities say they restrained and beat their teammate, a freshman, as part of a hazing incident. The player’s arms were bound so tightly with duct tape that he suffered muscle tears in both shoulders that later required surgery, authorities said.
After the alleged incident, the player left Wheaton College and transferred to a school in Indiana.
Clifford Ward is a freelance reporter.
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