CALDWELL, Texas (KTRK) -- Social media is buzzing after four Texas high school volleyball players were accused of forcibly stripping a teammate on a school bus.
What makes the story even more alarming is what prosecutors say the motive was.
The students attend Caldwell High School, which is southwest of College Station.
They told investigators the incident was part of a tradition that "happens every year," but the district attorney is taking things seriously.
All four teenage volleyball players have been charged with felonies.
Katherine Hart, 18, Marina Brinkman, 17, Sophie Goodman, 17, and Kadie Hartman, 17, are charged with indecency with a child by exposure.
According to court documents, three of the teenagers held down a 14-year-old girl and pulled down her pants and underwear, exposing her genitals, while the other teen acted as a lookout.
The victim said she repeatedly asked them to stop.
The incident reportedly happened on Sept. 21, while the team was returning home from a game in Bell County.
Witnesses say at least one of the players involved later called what she did "rape."
In court documents, the 14-year-old victim said the lookout "played music as loud as possible" and also sang loudly to drown out any sound she made.
"Is it right to do it? No. But it is something that happens. It's a prank," said Craig Greening, an attorney for one of the girls.
"Well, for my information from the investigation at the school, the girls, over the years, used as a code word, 'rape,'" Greening said of the rape allegation. "But it really meant just pantsing, taking somebody's pants down and playing a prank on them."
According to the school district, there were four adult staff members on the bus at the time, but the incident remains under investigation.
"Our comment is that we are committed every day to make sure that our students are safe in our environment, and we cannot make any further comments pending this investigation," a representative for Caldwell ISD told KXXV.
Indecency with a child is a third-degree felony punishable by two to 10 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
4 Texas high school volleyball players face charges after teammate allegedly stripped on school bus
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