guinea pigGROSSE ILE, MI – Members of the Grosse Ile High School lacrosse team have been accused of killing a guinea pig, drinking its blood and painting themselves in blood as part of a pre-game ritual.

According to Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy, 18-year-old Tanner Coolsaet and 17-year-old Michael Roth showed up to a team meeting off campus with a guinea pig in a box.

With over half of the 18 member team present, along with some adults, Coolsaet allegedly used a knife to slit the guinea pig’s throat. Roth then allegedly beat it with a small bat. Some of the team members present reportedly drank the animal’s blood and painted their faces with the blood.

The incident was brought to the attention of police after a teacher heard some of the students talking about what had been done. Both Coolsaet and Roth were charged with killing/torturing an animal and conspiracy to commit killing/torturing of animals. They are each facing a possible 4 years in prison.

Students at the school say that they are now suffering from taunts from other schools at sporting events and practices, where they are now known as the “guinea pig school.”

One parent complained that he didn’t see what the big deal was and that the media was blowing the killing of an animal for sport out of proportion.

“Guinea pigs are like the Bic lighter of the rodent population, you can buy them for a couple of bucks and these kids did something that was going to amp them up and they had a little bit of fun with it,” he said. “It was a little bit of humor, but I don’t think it’s that big of a deal.”

Worth disagrees, stating: “The alleged facts in this case illustrate much more than a youthful prank or a pre-game antic. We must take these cases seriously.”

When Coach Butch Ryan was asked about what the incident he said it has been a letdown for a lot of people in the community.

“They let a lot of people down: teammates, people in the community, school,” he said. “They let themselves down.”

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