N.J. athletics association probes 'lynching' photo
The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association has asked the Phillipsburg School District to provide a report on a photo said to feature the district's high school wrestlers surrounding a hanged practice dummy.
The photo, which surfaced online in recent days, depicts seven young white males, many in Phillipsburg athletic attire and two with pointed hoods, around the black figure. The picture has spurred online debate and sparked claims of racial overtones.
The Gloucester County NAACP has asked that an apology letter be sent to Paulsboro and its residents and the county community. It also requested the Phillipsburg wrestling team undergo sensitivity training.
Steven J. Timko, NJSIAA executive director, said in a statement that the association expected a report on the incident by noon Thursday.
"The report will help NJSIAA determine what further actions, if any, will be taken," he said.
Timko said the incident was also reported to the Attorney General's Office division on civil rights.
Phillipsburg Superintendent George M. Chando said in a statement Tuesday that "upon conclusion of the investigation, actions were taken by the district consistent with its policies."
- Angelo Fichera