Anderson Co. High coach resigns during hazing investigation

Anderson Co. High coach resigns during hazing investigation

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By HARLOW SUMERFORD
6 News Reporter

CLINTON (WATE) -- Anderson County High School head softball coach Heather Branum has resigned from her coaching position Monday while she was under investigation for a possible hazing incident.

The incident in question happened while the team was in Myrtle Beach playing in a spring break tournament. 

According to Principal Greg Deal, before she resigned, Branum was suspended for five games, or about two weeks.

Along with coaching softball, Branum is also a special education teacher at the high school. She hasn't been suspended from teaching.

6 News spoke Monday with the parent of one of the girls on the softball team.

According to the parent, the hazing was directed at freshmen on the team who were forced by teammates to get undressed and remain in a swimming pool for 10 minutes.

The parent also says Branum watched the incident and threatened the girls with running laps if they told others about the incident.

In her resignation letter, Branum writes:

"It is with my deepest regret that I submit my resignation as the Head Coach of the Anderson County Softball team. During a recent spring break trip, an event occurred that I am extremely sorry that I allowed to happen and I take full responsibility. I would never do anything to put my team in harm's way or embarrass my team. There is nothing that I wouldn't do for any of my girls if they needed me. In the past two years, I've learned a lot about how hard it is to be a coach in today's environment and I am still learning. Please accept this letter of resignation with my sincerest apologies."

Principal Deal wouldn't go into details about the allegations against Branum.

However, he says he's talking to students and their parents to find out if anything inappropriate happened on the trip and if so, who's at fault.

The principal describes the event as a mild hazing incident and says he regrets that it happened.

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