Grand jury investigating raucous game

Months after football players and fans from Half Moon Bay High School were accused of spewing racial epithets at Sequoia High School players during a league game, the San Mateo County civil grand jury is investigating the alleged incident.

The grand jury is looking into racial insults allegedly used against at least one Sequoia High player during the Nov. 2 game, according to witnesses who recently testified before the jury. The game was also allegedly marked by nude streakers as well as food and rocks being thrown at Sequoia students and fans.

The investigation, which began last month, follows letters of apology, game relocations and policy changes that followed the incident. Half Moon Bay school officials apologized for the violence, but did not admit to witnessing any racial epithets.

In January, school officials decided that basketball and baseball games between the schools would be held in a neutral location for the rest of the school year.

The games will be back at the respective schools next year, said Peninsula Athletic League Commissioner Terry Stogner, who testified in May.

Stogner said he was surprised to receive a call from the grand jury. He explained that the investigation is trying to determine whether the incident was just caused by “a few bad apples.”

Members of the grand jury did not comment on the investigation.

“I don’t see this as a burgeoning problem,” Stogner said.

Half Moon Bay High School Principal Susan Million said the school hired a nonprofit that is teaching coaches, parents and students how to create a positive sports environment.

Million, who also testified before the grand jury, said the school has restructured the seating of the stadium to make it safer.

Sequoia Principal Morgan Marchbanks said the incident was not the only reason for the investigation.

“[The grand jury] took it on because there were reports that this has happened before,” she said.

svasilyuk@sfexaminer.com

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