UPDATE: Three Rapids wrestlers plead no contest - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

UPDATE: Three Rapids wrestlers plead no contest to disorderly conduct charges

WOOD COUNTY (WAOW) -- The Wisconsin Rapids wrestling team is missing one of its stars at the state team championship on Friday night. A judge ordered Devin Peterson to spend the weekend behind bars instead of in Madison. Two other Rapids wrestlers charged with disorderly conduct learned their fate and a fourth will head to trial.

All four of the Wisconsin Rapids wrestlers went to the individual state championship this year -- and two of them won. But only three traveled to Madison on Friday for the team tournament. That's because Devin Peterson is spending the weekend behind bars.

"Things went on," said Peterson. "Not the extreme like my lawyer said. I just want to apologize."

"It should have been the best time of their lives so far in their life," said Peterson's attorney James Kurszewski. "And instead they've been the object of scorn, ridicule, embarrassment and shame on the basis of largely unfounded allegations by basically one individual."

Peterson, Kasey Einerson, Zachary Benitz and Rylan Lubeck were each charged with disorderly conduct after last season. According to a criminal complaint, the four danced naked around the locker room -- at times touching their genitals to another wrestler. The victim's parents spoke in court on Friday, but to protect the victim, Newsline 9 is not identifying them.

"After all is said and done, my son had felt proud to be a Rapids wrestler and believed himself to be friends with the team," said the victim's mother. "How tragic for him to realize otherwise."

"All I was looking for initially was an apology and change in the culture that allowed it to happen," said the victim's dad.

Peterson, Einerson and Benitz pleaded "no contest" -- but after a last-minute decision, Lubeck decided to go to trial instead.

"I was expecting him to enter a plea today," said prosecuting attorney Craig Lambert. "We had an agreement and he backed out of the agreement and that's fine. He's entitled to his trial if he wants one."

Peterson garnered the most severe punishment. After staying in jail this weekend, he'll have to come back for spring break.

"I just want to say that there will never be a situation like this again, your honor," said Peterson. "I apologize."

The court can drop the charges against Einerson and Benitz if they do 100 hours of community service and keep their records clean for the next year. Peterson needs to do community service too -- and finish before he heads to UW-Madison to wrestle in the fall.

People on both sides of the case say they're happy to put the ordeal behind them and hope the community can move forward from here.

Powered by Frankly