Berry Middle student charged with rape

By AMY JONES / Associate Editor

HOOVER — A Berry Middle School eighth-grader has been charged with rape after an incident on the Berry campus.

According to a Hoover Police Department press release, officers received a report that an assault had occurred on April 13. The incident allegedly took place after school let out for the day, when students were on their way to the buses.

The victim, also an eighth-grader, reported that she was sexually assaulted in an upstairs boys’ bathroom. After she left the school, she contacted the Hoover Police Department, which began an investigation that culminated in officers taking the suspect into custody at 8 p.m. April 13, according to the release.

After the suspect was questioned, he was taken to the Shelby County Juvenile Detention Center, where he remains in custody.

A hearing will be held on May 2 to determine the suspect’s future custody status.

Hoover Police encouraged any concerned students to speak to school counselors.

“We believe this is an isolated incident and the suspect in this case will not be returning to class,” Hoover Police officials said in the press release.

Jason Gaston, spokesperson with Hoover City Schools, said school system officials would not comment on the ongoing investigation, in part because it “relates to a very serious juvenile matter.”

Gaston said system officials are cooperating fully with the Hoover Police Department.