Darien Schools Superintendent Defends District’s Actions in Wake of Students’ Assault of New Canaan Juvenile

The superintendent of Darien Public Schools said Thursday that a New Canaan student notified his office about the assault of a male juvenile at the hands of at least two Darien High School students on Nov. 7—the day after the attack and the same day that the incident was reported to police. According to a press release from Dr. Dan Brenner, Darien administrators turned over the New Canaan student’s email to Darien Police and told the New Canaan Public Schools about it. Though it wasn’t immediately clear whether that email included the names of at least three Darien students present during the assault—including a starting quarterback and receiver on the Blue Wave varsity football team—the superintendent indicated that the district as a policy is hands-off while criminal investigations are underway. “When the Darien Schools are made aware of a police investigation involving one of its students, it is the practice of the district to allow the investigation to go on without district involvement unless it is specifically requested by the investigating agency, in this case the New Canaan Police Department,” the superintendent’s statement said.

New Details of Darien Teens’ Assault of New Canaan Juvenile Emerge in Arrest Warrant Application

The assault of a New Canaan juvenile this month that resulted in the arrests of three Darien teenagers began with “hostile” and “antagonistic” trash-talking between high school students through text and Snapchat, court documents show. According to arrest warrant applications from New Canaan Police, citing sworn statements and interviews with a handful of teens present at an Old Kings Highway gathering that would be crashed by the Darienites, those communications included talk “how about how Darien High sucks and New Canaan High is better.”

The exchanges escalated—one of them included a photo of 18-year-old Darien resident Jack Joyce’s middle finger—followed by a text from the Darien High School senior saying “It’s Joyce” and “We’re coming.”

They did. It was about 11:15 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 6, and though the victim had told Joyce not to come to the house, even lying that he was not there, “a carload of Darien kids” arrived, “came storming downstairs” and two to four kids grabbed the juvenile while fellow Darien senior Brian Minicus put him in a headlock and punched his face about 12 times, according to the arrest warrant applications. When the assault ended, the juvenile iced his face and the Darien kids were “yelling violently and talking dirty,” according to the arrest warrant applications.

Turkey Bowl: New Canaanites Gather for Beloved Annual Tradition as Rams Beat Down Blue Wave 27-0

For generations of Americans, Thanksgiving Day and football are synonymous. And for New Canaanites, the football appetite is fed each year when the New Canaan High School Rams football team is pitted against their arch rival, the Darien Blue Wave in the Turkey Bowl. Thousands of New Canaanites traveled to Stamford’s Boyle Stadium on Thursday as part of the local holiday ritual—students, teachers and faculty, alumni, parents and residents. Among them was James Freyre, a 2017 NCHS graduate, and linebacker of two state championship Ram football squads, who said he was eager to come back and enjoy his first game as an alumnus. “It’s definitely a little less stressful to be a fan than a player,” Freyre told NewCanaanite.com while standing on the sidelines on a sunny, mildly chilly day.

Three Darien Teens Arrested after Assault in New Canaan; Trio Includes At Least Two DHS Football Players

Police on Wednesday evening arrested three Darien teenagers by warrant following the assault of a juvenile earlier this month in New Canaan. Brian Minicus, 18, was charged with third-degree assault and second-degree unlawful restraint; Jack Joyce, 18, was charged with disorderly conduct and interfering with an officer; and a 17-year-old was charged with conspiracy to commit third-degree assault and second-degree unlawful restraint. Police withheld the name of the third offender because of his age. Joyce and Minicus play as quarterback and wide receiver, respectively, for the Darien High School football team, and their arrests come on the eve of the Turkey Bowl. It isn’t clear whether or how the arrests will affect whether they’re permitted to play in the annual Darien-New Canaan rival football game that’s held each Thanksgiving morning, or whether the third teen arrested also is on the Blue Wave roster.