PLAINFIELD, Conn. (WTNH) — Two Plainfield teenagers are facing charges after police say they tossed racial slurs at players on an opposing high school football team.
On Friday night, Plainfield and New London fought it out on the field but it’s the alleged poor sportsmanship in the stands and after the game which may overshadow the Panthers win.
Plainfield police have arrested 18-year-old Zachary Coons and 19-year-old Teaque Carigan for a fight which broke out after the game. Some say the men started taunting New London players while they were still on the field.
Tommy Thompson, principal at New London High says, “they were using the N word. They were calling students N lovers.”
Folks in Plainfield say the alleged actions of two do not represent the rest of the town.
“Our parents of our kids had nothing to do with it. It was two former graduates, adults they graduated last year.” says Lisa Jankowski, the mother of Plainfield quarterback Stephen Jankowski.
He and other student athletes made a video in response to the incident. The students who are standing in three rows start off saying, “Good afternoon. We are the athletes of Plainfield High School and we condemn the use of ugly racial slurs directed toward the New London High School football players that led to an altercation on Friday September 26th.” Their message continues, “we pledge ourselves to good sportsmanship and urge our family, friends, and fans to do the same and we won’t tolerate anything less.”
Plainfield police tell News 8 if they had been made aware of any taunting during the game anyone involved would have been escorted off the property.
We asked the chief if the men arrested admitted to any racially charged comments he said they did not. More arrests though may follow.
Lisa Jankowski says, “it’s hurting this town and it’s hurting the kids in this school and they don’t deserve it.”
Thompson tells News 8, “it’s not that they haven’t heard the word before what seems to come up was that these were older people that were saying it.”
The video made by the student athletes ends with them saying, “We can all do better and we will. We are Plainfield.”
Prior to that video Plainfield quarterback Stephen Jankowski had posted a tweet Friday night which said, “that was a great, clean game by both teams. It’s a shame our fans had to ruin it. Good game NL, I respect you guys to the fullest.” New London’s quarterback Danny Maranda then replied, “appreciate it bro.”
Thompson says, “the kids really displayed leadership, good sportsmanship, and character during the game and after the game in how they handled this incident.”
Watch the Plainfield athlete’s video on YouTube condemning the racial remarks to New London players.