Parent sues hotel in Parkview High School hazing case

The lawsuit claims a hotel helped Parkview High School baseball players haze their fellow students during a summer trip to South Carolina.

ATLANTA/CHARLESTON (WXIA-TV) -- A federal lawsuit filed Wednesday discloses new details in a hazing case from June that has just resulted in six, Gwinnett County Parkview High School students being suspended for as long as the entire 2015-2016 school year.

The lawsuit's plaintiff is a parent who says his 14 year old son was one of the targets of the hazing. The lawsuit lists several upperclassmen by name, describing them as the attackers.

But the father is not suing any of the students. Instead, he is suing the hotel where the students were staying.

Separately, the father is asking police to pursue criminal charges against the students responsible.

But in his civil suit against the hotel, the father presents his and his son's version of what happened among some Parkview High School baseball players while the players were visiting South Carolina in June for a tournament. And the father says if it were not for the actions of a hotel employee, his son and the others might not have been attacked by the other students.

The father names the owners and managers of the Hyatt Place Airport Convention Center in North Charleston, SC, as the defendants.

He says in his lawsuit that his son and three roommates were in their room "terrified" because eight or nine upperclassmen -- and the lawsuit lists their names -- were in the hall demanding that the younger students let them into the room, after the upperclassmen allegedly attacked other students in another room.

According to the lawsuit, at least one of the upperclassmen "went to the front desk... and asked for a 'keycard' so they could gain entry to [his son's] room...."

And "without checking the ID of the person requesting the key" the hotel employee gave him the keycard.

That's how the father says the older students got into the room, and he says the older boys then "physically assaulted" his son, inappropriately touching him, partially removing his clothing.

Then he says his son "managed to break loose from his assailants... and began yelling for help at the top of his lungs."

The father says his son has permanent injuries from the attack. And he says other younger students were attacked, as well.

A spokeswoman for The Hyatt Hotels Corporation told 11Alive News that no one with the corporation will comment on the allegations since they are part of pending litigation.

The father is seeking "damages in excess of $500,000" from the hotel, in part to pay for his son's on-going medical expenses.

Additionally, the father's Atlanta attorney, Kurt Hilbert, told 11Alive News that the father wants the boys responsible to be prosecuted.

"My client filed a statement in July" with North Charleston Police detectives, Hilbert said. "He is asking police to keep the case open and pursue criminal charges against those who attacked his son."


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