WHEATON – A fourth former Wheaton College football player has reached a plea agreement in a 2016 hazing incident.
James Cooksey, 23, of Jacksonville, Fla., pleaded guilty July 16 to the misdemeanor count of attempted unlawful restraint. Nine felony charges against him have been dropped.
Victim Charles Nagy reported receiving serious injuries when he was attacked by five members of the team and left in a field with his limbs secured with tape. His injuries reportedly caused him to undergo two shoulder surgeries, prematurely ending his football career.
“He was attacked by the suspects in a dorm room where he was subdued with tape,” Wheaton Police Chief William Murphy said previously of Nagy in an email. Murphy, at the time, was deputy chief.
“His arms and legs were bound and a hood placed over his head. During this [time] his shoulders were injured. They dropped him off in a nearby baseball field.”
Nagy filed a lawsuit March 16 against Wheaton College and several players, including some who were not criminally charged.
As part of this latest plea agreement, Cooksey was sentenced to one month of court supervision. The agreement is different from those reached with his co-defendants – former Wheaton College football players Samuel TeBos, Kyler Kreger, Noah Spielman. They each pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery and were sentenced to one year of conditional discharge, along with being required to pay a $250 anti-crime fee and perform 100 hours of community service, including 25 hours of speaking to youth about the dangers of hazing.
Another former Wheaton College football player charged in the case, Benjamin Pettway of Lookout Mount, Ga., is expected to stand trial early next year.
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