Grisly details emerge on student sexual assault in Dietrich

A 17-year-old boy charged in the sexual assault of a Dietrich High School football player was arraigned Monday.

Tanner Ward, one of three teenagers charged in the attack, faces a felony count of forcible penetration by use of a foreign object, the Twin Falls Times-News reported this week. Ward is being charged as an adult. A former Dietrich student, John R.K. Howard, 18, of Keller, Texas, faces a June 10 preliminary hearing on the same felony charge.

A third teenager faces a lesser charge in juvenile court, according to The Times-News.

The attack, involving three white football players against a black teammate, received extensive coverage from the Washington Post Wednesday. According to the Post’s account of the case, one teenager held the victim while a second teen thrust a coat hanger into the victim’s rectum. A third teenager then kicked the coat hanger repeatedly, the Post reported, citing a criminal complaint.

The victim’s parents filed a $10 million lawsuit against Dietrich High School earlier this month, the Post reported. The suit alleges that school officials did nothing to stop the abuse, and encouraged students to fight the victim.

Dietrich school officials did not comment to the Post.



Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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