BELVIDERE — A New Jersey prosecutor says no charges will be filed against the members of a high school wrestling team who posed in a photograph that apparently depicts a lynching.

The Warren County prosecutor’s office said Thursday that its investigation with the Phillipsburg police found no criminal wrongdoing.

The photo, which surfaced online, showed seven white teens wearing Phillipsburg High wrestling attire posing with a black tackling dummy in a Paulsboro wrestling shirt and hanging from a noose. Two of the boys had the hoods on their sweatshirts fixed into points.

Paulsboro and Phillipsburg high schools are longtime wrestling powerhouses and rivals.

Prosecutor Richard T. Burke says his decision was cleared with the state attorney general’s office.

The matter is being referred back to Phillipsburg High School authorities.

Started at The Press in 1993 as an Ocean County reporter. Moved to the copy desk in 1994 until taking over as editor of At The Shore in 1995. Became deputy sports editor in 2004 and was promoted to sports editor in 2007.

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