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WOOD COUNTY, OH (Toledo News Now) -
A group of Fostoria students were involved in what Bowling Green Police are calling a "random act of violence." Now some familiar faces are facing felony charges.
Fostoria High School's football team could be two players short at its next game because the players are currently behind bars.
"There was a lot of disappointment in the reaction, because we do look to our student athletes to be leaders for our students," said Fostoria Superintendent Andrew Sprang. "It's unfortunate they made some bad choices."
Those bad choices played out on Sixth Street in Bowling Green, where police say a group of five Fostoria High School students allegedly assaulted two men in their late 20s early Sunday morning. The victims told police they were walking to their apartment when the teens pulled up next to them, hopped out the car and started beating them.
"The victims did have significant injuries and had to go to the hospital," said Maj. Tony Hetrick with the Bowling Green Police. "It appears that there was no precipitating event that caused them to want to assault these guys. It was random. Completely random."
When police located the teens – all 16 and 17 years old – all but one denied having been involved in a fight, but police say there was evidence.
"There was blood on shoes and socks from the kicking. We found a T-shirt in the vehicle that was blood-stained," said Hetrick.
School officials say the teens will not face suspension or expulsion if convicted, because the event did not occur on school property or at a school-related function. According to Fostoria High School's Athletic Code of Conduct, the incident could affect the players' athletic careers.
"Under the athletic code, it could very easily end their playing careers," said Sprang.
Only three of the five students were arrested and charged with felonious assault. Bowling Green Police say marijuana was found in the vehicle when the teens were pulled over, so more charges could be pending.
The three teens are being held at the Juvenile Detention Center in Bowling Green until their hearing in the Wood County Juvenile Court on Sept. 23.
For now, school officials say they are hoping for the best outcome.
"You have to pick up the pieces and move on," Sprang said. "While athletically, this is going to impact their careers, they still have a long life in front of them and they can learn and grow. They can still go out and be very productive members of society, and that's the most important thing."