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Little Miami football players no longer suspended for flag incident

Posted at 1:29 PM, Sep 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-15 17:58:45-04

Two Little Miami football players are no longer suspended from the team, but future consequences are still up to the coaching staff at the school. The two players ran onto the field on September 11, one carrying a "Thin Blue Line" flag, the other carrying a "Thin Red Line" flag.

The school initially suspended the two boys from the football team, but announced on Tuesday they would "return the players to active status" and that any further action relating to the matter would be considered an Athletic Department Code of Conduct issue.

"Initially, we were told he could carry the flags and then when he went to pick up tickets for the game, he was told 'I'm sorry, you can't carry the flags' -- that's it," said Kellie Williams, mother of Brady Williams, who carried the "Thin Blue Line" flag.

The school issued a statement Tuesday that said the district decided to discipline the boys, not for carrying the flags out to show support for first responders on the anniversary of 9/11, but because they weren't given permission by district officials.

"School administrators must act when students break the rules and these students were suspended from practice while the incident was investigated," the statement, signed by school board president Bobbie Grice, reads.

The statement said the superintendent and high school administrators, with the school board's support, performed an investigation into the incident and determined the students had no political motivations for their actions. They did determine "there were stances of insubordination."

For the rest of the season, the statement said, the only flags permitted to come through the football tunnel will be the flag of the United States of America and the Little Miami spirit flag.