Local police are investigating a high school football game in Michigan after fans reportedly spit, cursed and hurled racial slurs at players from the opposing team, according to the Detroit Free Press.
Things escalated following Almont High’s 36-8 win over Detroit Denby High School. As Denby was leaving the field, fans from Almont High reportedly spit on the Denby players, threw drinks at them and shouted racial slurs. A parent from Almont High is also accused of punching a Denby student during the confrontation.
The incident may have started after a member of Almont’s band taunted a Denby player. That player then shoved the band member, which ignited the fracas.
Almont moved on to the state final with the win.
Denby head coach Deon Godfrey said the racial taunts started after some Denby players took a knee during the national anthem, according to the Detroit Free Press.
"Our cameraman is white and was filming near some Almont fans," Godfrey said. "During the national anthem, he overheard them saying: 'Look at these N-words taking a knee and they don't even know why they're doing it,' and they kept going.”
Godfrey also said fans taunted players by saying they “need to be on a leash.”
“They called my student trainer a little monkey and they were saying: ‘Who let them off their leashes?’” Godfrey said. “‘They need to be on a leash. They never should have been here in the first place.’”
Officials called the contest in the fourth quarter due to the mounting number of personal fouls. After the game, the players did not shake hands at midfield, though both coaches exchanged a handshake.
Following that handshake, Almont’s coach, James Leusby, went back to the end zone to address his team. The Almont players and coaches were reportedly not involved in the confrontation after the game.
The Oakland County Sheriff’s department did not make any arrests, but is investigating the incident. Almont Superintendent William Kalmar said the school is also investigating the incident, and will take action if it can identify any spectators who were involved.
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