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Former Hills Football Captain Denies Involvement In Brawl

Prosecutor's office dismisses charges against Troy Zaffino; he said he wasn't at the house where a fight involving students from Wayne Hills and Wayne Valley high schools occurred.

A former Wayne Hills football captain charged with assault has said trying to prove his innocence in the matter "has been hell."

Senior Troy Zaffino told 1010 WINS that he was not at the party where the fight occurred. The wide receiver and defensive back said if he had been, he would have tried to stop it. Zaffino will graduate in June.

Darren Del Sardo, the attorney representing Zaffino, said the charges against his client were dropped by the Passaic County Prosecutor's Office a few weeks ago.

Zaffino and eight other Wayne Hills football players were charged with assaulting two  students after a party in October.

Seven of the players plead guilty to simple assault and were earlier this year. Andrew Monaghan, the only adult at the time the charges were filed, agreed to enter Pre-Trial Intervention, a probationary-like program, NorthJerey.com reported last month.

The incident generated a firestorm of controversy.

Residents in town were often divided on how they thought coach Chris Olsen and district officials should have handled the situation. 

The incident prompted district administrators to adopt a coaching the team and remaining the school’s athletic director. Olsen has since put .

The nine players, all starters, did not play in the team’s state sectional title game. Hills , giving the Patriots their second consecutive group state championship and Olsen his eighth in the previous 10 years. Hills came back to win the game in the final three minutes.

Gordon Rizzuto March 30, 2012 at 10:16 PM
Pam you have to be kidding. Kids who committ crimes should not be playing in championship games and people do have the right to know if there safety might be in jeopardy. Whose to say those 9 boys wouldn't gang up on somebody in the school or somebody on the other team? So then once again the victims also have a legal issue to then because aren't they minors too? Wouldn't black eye or a what looks like a serious injruy point that out? Not to mention the only person I heard say all these kids were football players was Olsen. Sorry Pam but the school had reasonable grounds just as the other coach to the other teams had reasonable suspicion by that allowing the kids to play they could be in danger. Fact is you didn't know whether or not they were going to team up on another kid. I doubt Olsen would stop them he has a history of assaulting his coaches and braking the rules himself.
pam roz April 01, 2012 at 02:37 PM
Gordon: For the most part, you've at least been level headed as one of the haters, but that comment is ridiculous! If the Board was so concerned about safety of other children, shouldn't the kids have been suspended from SCHOOL, where students are not protected with helmets and pads? Or should OIsen have taken it upon himself to do the jobs of HIS superiors too? By the way, Olsen did pose this incredibly obvious question when he also made his guilty of WH Football Player reference.
Al Scala April 01, 2012 at 02:46 PM
Well said Grow Up. Our BOE is a disaster. The only difference between them and the Titanic is the Titanic had a band. The BOE has to be dismantled over the next 3 years by voting them out of office. This is the only message elected office holders understand.
eyes wide shut April 01, 2012 at 02:50 PM
Sour Grapes, OUT WITH THE TIDE. Get over it.
WayneinWayne April 01, 2012 at 04:55 PM
Olsen has handled this episode perfectly as everythimg else he is involved in. Okay Pam are you satisfied now. We get it. He is your god. How will this town survive?
pam roz April 01, 2012 at 06:17 PM
I see waste of time responses, but no answers to the question posed. I guess you guys can't come up with anything intelligent, but that doesn't surprise me. The first seems like a relatively simple question. The second one was more rhetorical. Oops, multi-syllable words again...sorry!
eyes wide shut April 01, 2012 at 06:21 PM
Pam, do YOU really think anyone here cares about YOUR questions? The bottom line is, the VERDICT is IN...Now move on and worship your God, coz NO ONE ELSE here is. Geezzzzzzz move on.
WayneinWayne April 02, 2012 at 12:26 AM
pam roz, in the future do you think the Boe should ignore whatever the police say and just let kids continue to engage in extra curriculars until their day in court? what if there is not a police matter but a problem in school like cutting class? will there be a courtroom setup in the high schools so every kid can have their day? what is your solution? should just football players get the benefit of the doubt? what do you say to the many many athletes that have been suspended by olsen so far as the AD that have not had their day in court?
Gordon Rizzuto April 03, 2012 at 08:09 PM
Pam that's because the kids have a right to an education not the right to play football. They are guaranteed by the constitution to get an education but the constitution does not give them the automatic right to play football. Now Pam let me ask you something. I have a friend who graduated with Christian Olsen. My friend was not invited to the highschool scrimagge that Olsen's son was allowed to participate in at 11 years old. Does it give my friend the right to sue because had Olsen let all 11 year olds in the town participate he may have become great football player? As far as doing the job of his superiors he's in an authority position so that is one of his jobs. Not to mention he likes to do the board's job anyway rember he hires coaches without the boards position?
pam roz April 03, 2012 at 08:46 PM
Really, Gordon??? Show me exactly where in the constitution that kids have the right to an education. Just because you write something, doesn't make it accurate or factual. And your analogy is so off the wall, I simply can't respond to jibberish. And eyes...you don't need to throw in your useless 2 cents. I realize you appointed yourself as the moderator of this topic, but unless you can provide something constructive, please do everyone a favor and don't bother. In other words, don't bother.
WayneinWayne April 03, 2012 at 09:17 PM
pam ...i would really like to get your take on things and how this should have been handled because you obviously have a better method. pam roz, in the future do you think the Boe should ignore whatever the police say and just let kids continue to engage in extra curriculars until their day in court? what if there is not a police matter but a problem in school like cutting class? will there be a courtroom setup in the high schools so every kid can have their day? what is your solution? should just football players get the benefit of the doubt? what do you say to the many many athletes that have been suspended by olsen so far as the AD that have not had their day in court?
pam roz April 03, 2012 at 10:02 PM
You know, Wayne, not that I feel I owe you a response, but I will comment. Please have the guts to respond to my below questions as well. All the WH side ever asked was to allow the justice system to take its course. Simply put, this was not a school or BOE matter. It was a police matter. Why did the BOE need to get involved? It should have been handled by the police...period. If a kid cuts class, does the principal consult with the police to see how it should be handled? No, the princlpal has the authority to make a decision everyone moves on. This was a case that was bungled at every level by everyone involved. I trust you can acknowledge that and I'm not going to review piece by piece. Please let us know if you are aware of any athletes who were suspended by Olsen or any Wayne AD for a non-school related activity?
Gordon Rizzuto April 03, 2012 at 11:56 PM
Pam the new Jersey constitution says every child is entitled to a thorough and efficient from they are 5 to 21. As far as that goes I am aware of athletes that got suspended for stuff outside of school at Wayne and other towns. hem playing a sport isn't a right it's a priivledge. They need to follow the rules. I believe the way they were punished was fair and I also believe that was taken into consideration during their plea deals. As far as my stuff being jibberish? You praise Olsen however the man has his faults. You say that missing this game may have ruined there opportunity so I'm going to use the whole Olsen let his son participate scrimmage analogy. How do I know somebody else's life on this planet was ruined because Olsen didn't give them the chance to participate in that scrimmage but instead gave it to his son? Now Pam do you atleast admit that Olsen was wrong in that situation?
WayneinWayne April 04, 2012 at 12:16 AM
Yes I am fully aware of Olsen suspending athletes ( non football of course) . So you think if a kid is involved in a police matter, which in my opinion is much moreserious then any school matter..... The school and boe should just ignore that fact? I would not feel very good about the boe if they allowed a kid allegedly involved with the police to just carry on . That is not how the real world operates at any level. If a kid is accused of rape or assault the school board should just ignore that? Talk about liability issues!! There is no common sense in that . You are saying the principal has more powers then the entire school board and the police. How long should wewait for a verdict? Sometimes these things take 2 years to sort out. The should just go through his life like nothing ever happened? And then what if he is convicted or pleads? Too late for punishment since his sport might be over and maybe he has graduated . Many people have their lives changed while waiting for theirday in court and then are found not guilty. Why should it be different for waynenhills football players.
pam roz April 04, 2012 at 11:08 AM
I don't know about you guys. It's impossible to reason with you. Gordon: You must have dug deep to find that one, assuming it's accurate. When someone refers to "The Constitution", it is generally the US Constitution. And by none of the your cohort haters chipping in, it appears no one was able to find a reference to a right to an education in the US Constitution, So keep typing things that you think are facts. Facts are facts. I just love the reference in an earlier topic by one of the haters (was it you?) that "I know as much of the facts as I need to know." Again, your analogy is jibberish. It's like saying because a person wasn't born in the USA, he/she should win a lawsuit against the government because he/she is not allowed to be president (and I'll clarify) of the USA. Wayne: If a student is accused of rape or assault, what you are saying is that the BOE should step in and suspend him/her from extracurricular activities, but ALLOW him/her to ATTEND SCHOOL??? Nice sense of values you have!!! You didn't provide any specifics for suspension exclusively from sports by Olsen or any WAYNE AD for a non-school related activity. I am not saying it's not possible, but so far I haven't heard of any. BTW: Exclusively is a multi-syllable word so whatever athletic suspension you come up with means there were not any other education/school/extracurricular related implications.
WayneinWayne April 04, 2012 at 01:00 PM
Why in the world would I give you names of minors while you hide behind a false name? Yes, children are granted the right to an education by individual states and that is why it is illegal to not have your child in an educational system . You seem to want greater rights for your football players then any other citizen. Extra curricular activities are a privilege and not a right. Don't you understand that? Any other coach would have suspended their players for violating team rules for any involvement in an altercation like what took place that night. Olsen claims to be a discipline guy and when he had the chance to show that with his own players he FAiLED. Sorry but your false god is a fAILURE
pam roz April 04, 2012 at 01:50 PM
I'm not asking for names. Are you unable to describe something using the third person? FACT: Olsen was not permitted to bench the players, as he was following orders from the acting superintendent, who advised that the boys were required by law to play. Why is that so difficult to comprehend? Please answer this question...do you believe that a student accused of rape or assault should be suspended ONLY from extracurricular activities and not from school? You sound like a real frustrated former athlete or wannabe. I'll bet Olsen disciplined you or cut you from a team (possibly football - where there are no cuts?) Is that accurate? False name, huh??? Pot calling kettle black.
eyes wide shut April 04, 2012 at 01:59 PM
Beating a dead horse are we? Move along Pam, move along
Gordon Rizzuto April 04, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Pam like I said earlier because if they get suspended from school and turn out to be innocent then they really would have a legitimate lawsuit because they had a right taken away from them. As far as what I'm saying is being jiberish.How can you compare them. It's against the rules for somebody born outside the united states however if we changed the rules we wouldn't change it for just one person unless congress amended the constitution.Like I said if Olsen was going to let his 11 year old participate he should have let every 11 year old do it. Also the way he went and carried on saying his boys weren't guilty of anything was not somebody who was going to bench his players. The athletic director shouldn't even be questioning his boss's decision.
pam roz April 04, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Let me get this straight and PLEASE correct me if I have misinterpreted your position in any way... You are saying that accused rapists should NOT be subject to suspension from school by the BOE (for a day, a week, or whatever term the BOE decides upon). Only the athletic coach or athletic director has authority to impose punishment. OK. If that's your opinion, there's not much I can do about it. I do feel sorry for you. And, BTW, people do make mistakes. And people learn from their mistakes. I would imagine that Olsen regrets letting his 11 year old son participate in an activity if it was not age appropriate.
WayneinWayne April 04, 2012 at 03:02 PM
Required by law to play? That cannot be funnier and quite an interpretation. And not true at all. Why was Olsen so keen to listen when he agreed and it benefitted him but when the tables turned he became insubordinate and openly questioned and tried to bully the board? You can't have it both ways. Nobody ever told him he had to play them as demanded by law . And also since when does Olsen care about rules and laws ? What a conveniently stupid argument you make
WayneinWayne April 04, 2012 at 03:12 PM
That's funny Pam because in an interview less then 1 year ago Olsen still defended letting his 11 year old son play. Should I send you the link to the interview. Your false god can do no wrong? Accused of a crime and convicted of a crime are very different . So u guess your stance is that the guilty 8 should also have been removed from school for 5 months while waiting for their plea deal for assault charges? Pam you are talking yourself up a slippery slope and are too dumb to realize it.
pam roz April 04, 2012 at 03:42 PM
Wayne: You are simply incredible. You have absolutely NO KNOWLEDGE of the facts, nor do you care. Just keep spewing your hatred and assumptions. Why I am wasting my time trying to educate you? YES FACT FACT FACT: The Acting Superintendent told Olsen on November 11, 2011 that the boys were required by law to play. CASE CLOSED. ACCEPT IT!!!
pam roz April 04, 2012 at 03:47 PM
Wayne: You definitely have comprehension issues (among many others). Please go back to Language Arts class, or perhaps you're still in elementary school and haven't reached that level??? It certainly seems I'm corresponding with a 3rd grader.
WayneinWayne April 04, 2012 at 04:19 PM
okay pam...keep praying to the football gods and their savior . You are a complete embarrassment to all of the normal Wayne hills football parents. By the way, the few i spoke to wish you would just go away as you do not represent them in a good light.
eyes wide shut April 04, 2012 at 05:09 PM
Geez Pam get a life, stop trying to resurrect the dead..It's OVER. Case CLOSED..Boys are guilty as charged and Olsen is out. I know its Easter week and you are hoping that something will rise up..But stop with your comments and insults as well...Now if only Olsen's house sells, he will be on his way. Hmmm Maybe a nice price reduction on the home will help OR maybe you should buy it and turn it into a shrine or something? OR you can call it your "field of dreams" Pipe dreams that is...
Al Scala April 04, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Eight of the nine have worked out their deals with the authorities and one was cleared. What else is there to say. If Troy Zaffino feels he has an action against the BOE, that's his perogative! Olsen is cornered into making a decision, I think by June 30th and this whole mess is over thankfully. Right, wrong or indifferent, IT'S OVER! .......PAM ROZ, go onto YOUTUBE and listen to Roy Orbison's version of "It's Over", which by the way is a great song, sung by a great artist. Maybe, you'll come to the realization that IT'S OVER!
WayneinWayne April 04, 2012 at 11:20 PM
you are right pam roz - i do have a comprehension problem. i cannot comprehend how any adult has your twisted outlook on all the events that have transpired and how they should have been handled? i cant comprehend how any human can put another on such a pedestal that you canot admit any mistakes, any accountability, and any responsibility for anything. I cannot comprehend why you think w hills football players should get special treatment and not held accountable? i cannot comprehend why you bow to false idols? i cannot comprehend that you are an adult and a parent and that your last name does not begin with an O. I cannot comprehend why if you are such an over-the-top blind supporter and leader of the Olsenites why you dont proudly divulge your name?
Gordon Rizzuto April 05, 2012 at 05:22 PM
Pam Olsen doesn't think ehe did anything wrong. He never thinks he does anything wrong. You need to realize you made a mistake in order to learn from them. Also unless the judge says otherwise the school won't be able to tell an accused rapist they can't be there because kids are required to get an education. For teachers they can put them on paid leave until everything gets straightened out. NOBODY DESERVES SPECIAL TREATMENT.
WayneinWayne April 05, 2012 at 06:57 PM
heres a quote from the nj.com article from late last year regarding having his 11 year old son playing with the HS team. Does he sound apologetic and contrite? NOT 1 BIT. “I truly, truly don’t believe it was a big deal,” he said of letting his son participate in the August scrimmage. “That field is my workplace, and I didn’t do anything different than any other father doesn’t do with his kid.” ( I wonder if an ironworker, a coal-miner, a fireman, a police officer etc...could bring their son to work for the day and explain it away like this ) here is a link with all the video interviews. http://www.nj.com/hssports/blog/football/index.ssf/2011/12/wayne_hills_coach_chris_olsen_draws_ire_from_critics_but_praise_from_ex-players_colleagues.html

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