A Massachusetts high school football team has forfeited the remainder of the season, including the traditional Thanksgiving Day game, after racist graffiti was found spray-painted on a young player's home.
Lunenburg Public Schools Superintendent Loxi Jo Calmes announced Monday the high school has canceled the rest of the season and that an investigation is underway into alleged racist slurs by Lunenburg players directed at Worcester South High football players earlier this season.
Someone painted racist graffiti including the N-word last week on the home of a 13-year-old student who plays on Lunenburg High School's freshman and junior varsity football teams. His father is black and his mother is white.
"Knights don't need n*****," the graffiti read, according to MyFoxBoston.com.
The Anti-Defamation League has said it was a hate crime and commended police for making the case a top priority, the station reported.
"This brazen attack on the home of a high school football player warrants everyone's condemnation. This case is indicative of how school bullying can quickly escalate to a hate crime and civil rights violations, making it a community wide concern," ADL regional director Robert Trestan in the statement.
Police Chief James Marino told The Boston Globe that investigation into the racist graffiti is ongoing with help from the FBI, state police and the district attorney's office. He declined to comment on whether the act was committed by a football player.
The boy's father accused Lunenburg officials of covering up racist remarks made by Lunenburg football players at games against Worcester and wants Lunenburg coaches to resign. He thinks the same football players were involved in defacing his home last week and hazing his son, The Boston Globe reported.
Calmes said Monday that the school district will continue to make its resources available to assist the boy's family in response to the“act of hate,” according to the newspaper.
“The educators and coaches of Lunenburg value diversity, and we care deeply about all of our students,” Calmes told reporters. “We have no tolerance for racism in any form, and we do everything we can to eliminate it from our schools and our community."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.