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August  23

'Our Guys' Lose Appeal

The AP reports tonight that a federal appeals court in Philadelphia has affirmed the convictions of three Glen Ridge athletes involved in sexually assaulting a mentally-handicapped neighbor with a baseball bat in 1989.

Christopher Archer and twin brothers Kevin and Kyle Scherzer, convicted in 1993, have already served their sentences, but appealed their convictions to try to clear their names and stay off New Jersey's sexual offender registry.

The decision to uphold the conviction was made by a three-judge panel of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Whether the case will be appealed further has not been decided.

The Glen Ridge rape case was the subject of a 1997 book by Bernard Lefkowitz, "Our Guys: The Glen Ridge Rape and the Secret Life of the Perfect Suburb," which became a made-for-tv movie.

August 23, 2004 in Hardball | Permalink


'Our Guys' ?

*Very* poor choice of words.

Posted by: Right of Center | Aug 24, 2004 9:06:27 AM

somebody help me get this straight, this happened back in 1989 and these guys, who are now inching closer to middle age, are hoping to clear their name - do I have this right so far? Is the thinking that if they lose, no one will read any of these AP stories that may appear in papers across the country and where, anyone who long ago forgot who these guys were, will now get a free refresher course? Is that the game plan? Just checking...

Posted by: A Nick Fan Sorta | Aug 24, 2004 9:44:21 AM


Ahh. I see. Much better with the addition of the 4th paragraph in your story. Forgot about the movie.

Posted by: Right of Center | Aug 24, 2004 10:11:06 AM

Yes, Our Guys is also a name of the book on which the movie was based.

I dunno. Something tells me these guys aren't really remorseful for what they did. I mean, if no one came forward, we would have never learned the truth.

I don't think their attitudes towards women have changed one iota. If they lived in my neighborhood, I'd be wary.

Posted by: Miss Martta | Aug 24, 2004 12:42:14 PM

I know the Scherzer boys and they are great guys. There is more to this story that was held out because some young jackass prosecutor wanted to make a name for himself. This girl wasn't exactley a church going purist. These guys were railroaded by a system looking to send good looking athletes to prison because the men trying the case were always picked last in gym class and loathed successful, popular young men like the Scherzer brothers.

Posted by: Bill | Feb 9, 2006 11:32:51 PM

Hi, my name is Laura. I am about to read the book "Our Guys" for a class that I am taking at my college. In order to get to some background of the book, I googled it and hit a discussion forum in which you had recently written:

"I know the Scherzer boys and they are great guys. There is more to this story that was held out because some young jackass prosecutor wanted to make a name for himself. This girl wasn't exactley a church going purist. These guys were railroaded by a system looking to send good looking athletes to prison because the men trying the case were always picked last in gym class and loathed successful, popular young men like the Scherzer brothers."

I come from an affluent town, I go to an affluent school and I am about to graduate from college. Although I have not yet read the book, I do understand the background of it. However, since you recently wrote on the forum I was hoping you might give me some insight into this case regarding what the book says versus what you believe. I want to know the full story so that I can better understand what I am about to read.

Thank you.

Posted by: Laura | Feb 15, 2006 4:07:55 AM

Bill, you've got to be kidding me. I seriously question whether you know the Scherzer boys. And if there's so much more information to know that redeem them, then why doesn't someone put it out there? OR why didn't someone put it out there? It doesn't matter thet the girl wasn't a church going purist. That couldn't be more irrelevant. She was obviously - to everyone that laid eyes on her or spoke to her - mentally retarded and the Scherzer's knew it. What "nice guy" thinks that a mentally retarded girl wants to be "pleasured" with a baseball bat and broomstick? Can you honestly say that she consented to this? Can you honestly tell me that any teenage girl, let alone a mentally retarded girl, had every intention of being a basement whore? Get real, Bill. Would you want your sister or daughter hanging out with them? The fact is, they might be "nice guys" in your mind, but they were or are sick freaks.

Posted by: DC | Mar 1, 2006 10:12:29 AM

None of them are presently in the NJ sex offender registry. Perhaps they quietly won a subsequent appeal?

Posted by: Just a guy | Apr 2, 2006 11:52:22 AM

The appeal for them to not be registered was lost because they are sick offenders...after reading this book it appears that these boys have a history of committing sick violent acts to make themselves feel better because in reality they aren't worth dirt. THANK GOD they finally had to go to jail..where they belong.

Posted by: LM | Apr 5, 2006 1:29:28 PM

I am so sick of this story, so sick of remembering that time, and beyond sick of the people who continue to defend these sick pervs.

Any guy who needs to use a broom or a bat on a girl should have the same thing done to them!

And the "great guy" thing...almost every serial killer has been described as a great guy by people close to them. Jeffery Dahmer was so charming he convinced police to bring one of his escaped victims back to his apartment. Gacy let an early victim of his sexual abuse live - and the kid spent years trying to get someone to believe a nice guy like Gacy could have raped a boy.
Nice guys my *^%

Posted by: hrhppg | Apr 5, 2006 2:00:16 PM

They're called sociopaths...they are born with no conscience but are able to act oh so charming so no one suspects.

Posted by: mauigirl52 | Apr 5, 2006 2:03:02 PM

I just read the book for a women's studies course at my college. They deserved a much harsher sentence than they received. How anyone could defend them and their actions is beyond me. It made me physically sick to read this book...and physically sick to hear people defending them. Ugh. It has, however, reaffirmed my future plans. Prosecutor for sex crimes.

Posted by: Girl | Apr 15, 2006 12:51:09 AM

The problem with the book, Laura, was that it set Glen Ridge up as a "perfect" suburb, which then, in the book's somewehat raggedy telling, hastened to cover up its own failings as reflected in the rapists' vile actions. It also, according to the book, exalted the jock culture of Glen Ridge HS, which in turn led to the rape, out of the perpjocks' inbred sense of social entitlement.

But many, many towns in NJ (to cite just one state, perhaps where you live, Laura, it's the same) take high school sports seriously. That makes none of them a sister city to Gomorrah. Nor does the path from h.s. sports stardom lead automatically to rape, that assumption comes directly out of the worst feminist rants.

It happened and it was terrible and the rats were successfully prosecuted. That, Bill's attempt above to cast aspersions on both the victim and the prosecutor to the contrary, should suffice. The book was glib and carefully crafted towards being sold as a movie, and it contained as many cliches about suburbia as your average episode of "Desperate Housewives." And it succeeded for the longest time in unfairly hanging on Glen Ridge a vision of it as a sort of citadel of arrogance.

I'm also a bit amused by your assertion, Laura, that you go to an "affluent school." What does that mean? I can't imagine any college or university announcing to the world that it's "affluent." Watch that one when you write.

Posted by: cathar | Apr 15, 2006 8:15:55 AM

Ummm-I still don't understand how these disgusting human beings could ever be described as "great guys." Regardless of time they still did a heinous thing in 1989. What if it was your daughter this happened too? Would time make you want to shake their hands and tell them you forgive and forget?? I think not. When I watched that movie the only regret I have is how long it took to make. It enrages me how athletes are exempt from responsibility for their actions. Maybe if we didn't make demi gods out of them they wouldn't be so disrespectful to others.

Posted by: Patricia | Apr 19, 2006 9:22:19 PM

Their athleticism doesn't matter. Whether the girl was a "church going purist" or not does not matter. The simple fact that she was raped by a bunch of guys should suffice to show that these guys are not nice guys at all. Nice guys do not rape and torture the mentally challenged. Hell, nice guys do not rape and torture anyone. Frankly, I fear for the future of society if the victim's ordeal no longer matters simply because she was no "church going purist."

Posted by: Dee | May 22, 2006 3:38:20 PM

I went to High School in Glen Ridge and graduated a few years before these guys did. I don't remember too much about them as I was a senior when they were freshman.

I have read "Our Guys" and can tell you that the book paints a very accurate picture of what went on in that town: How the Jocks got away with everything and the parents, police and school looking the other way or not taking immediate action. Those who were not jocks, like myself and my friends, were outcasted.

I do know that these kids were nothing but trouble. I knew some of their older brothers who weren't too much better.

The problem as I see it was that in all of the incidents leading up to the rape, disciplinary action against them was rare. The police never filed charges and any damages was usually taken care of by money exchaning hands and the matter in question therefore forgotten.

All of this just made the kids in question feel that they were untouchable. No one had ever punished them for wrong doing or at least not enough. They usually laughed when given detention in school or were suspended.

So, do the lack of actions by the parents, town and the school excuse them? Of course not. A lot of people are to blame. All I can say is that a lot of people got what they had coming and not just those who committed that crime. It was disgusting that so many residents stood by the kids as they were terrified of their quaint little town getting a name, or, even worse, their property values going down.

It's been many years since all of that happened. The town has changed though and probably for the better. The guys in question got what they had coming and probably got off light at the end of the day. Did they learn from all of this? One would hope so.

Posted by: timman19 | Jun 9, 2006 3:22:44 PM

I just read over these posts after reading the book. I too goggled it because I was interested in an update. It is ridiculous that anyone would claim these guys were "nice." Look, what they did was incredibly disgusting. Even if the defense was correct (which I do not believe for a second) that she asked for it, there is nothing that can convince me that it is normal that these kids would take advantage of that.

Does anyone have any updates on what happened to them? Are they still in Jersey? Is she still in Jersey? Last I read she was working in a mall doing menial work and although the town was not very cool she was getting a lot of positive feedback from people all over the country.

Posted by: LawyerMan | Jul 7, 2006 6:35:14 PM


Here's what I have as my mother still lives in Glen Ridge.

Corcoran, who charged and then later dismissed out, killed himself a little over a year ago. He was in the army and committed suicide after killing his wife and her lover. Sounds nasty.

As for the Scherzers, they did their time in a medium security prison. They have long since been released. One of them, I think it was Kyle, had his sentence extended after getting into a nasty fight while in prison.

Archer also did his time in a medium security prison and has also been released.

Both the Scherzer and Archers have long since left Glen Ridge and relocated to different states. In fact, most families whose sons had some sort of involvment have also moved as well.

I hear that the Scherzers and Archer are now working and living elsewhere and probably in obscurity and I would no be surprised if they are keeping their past activities a secret.

As for the victim, I believe her family has since moved but still remain in New Jersey. I am not sure what she is doing at this point but I hope she is well.

That's all I know. I hope this helps.

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