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Ex-Maine West High School coach’s trial set to start Tuesday

Former Maine West High School soccer coach Michael Divincenzo arrives Cook County Circuit Court Skokie Tuesday Dec. 17 2013. Divincenzo

Former Maine West High School soccer coach Michael Divincenzo arrives at Cook County Circuit Court in Skokie on Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2013. Divincenzo, whose criminal trial begins today, faces misdemeanor charges for his complacency in the brutal sexual and physical assaults of at least five student athletes as part of hazing rituals at the Des Plaines public high school. | Tim Boyle/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: January 18, 2014 6:31AM



The former Maine West High School soccer coach criminally charged after brutal hazing allegations surfaced at the school last year is expected to go on trial Tuesday in Skokie.

Prosecutors said in May that Michael Divincenzo, 37, of Elk Grove Village, knew that some members of the soccer team he coached were being attacked by other students who would hold them down and, in some cases, sodomize them through their underwear.

He’s been charged with misdemeanor battery, hazing and failure to report abuse. The allegations all revolve around similar reported incidents in June, August and September 2012.

Divincenzo has denied guilt “of any kind.” Known affectionately at the school in Des Plaines as “Divo,” he is still beloved by several current and former students and players.

The school district fired Divincenzo a year ago, after the hazing allegations first surfaced.

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