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October 27, 1987

A football player from San Dieguito High School pleaded guilty Monday to a felony charge stemming from an attack on a Leucadia family--the third athlete from the school to admit involvement in gang-like beatings.

The 16-year-old junior, a starting defensive lineman, pleaded guilty to felony battery with great bodily injury just as his trial was to begin in Juvenile Court. Sentencing was set for Dec. 3, after a psychological report is completed.

The youth lives in La Costa and is the son of a prominent home builder. He could be sentenced to four years in a California Youth Authority facility, but a less severe sentence is expected.

Two other athletes have also pleaded guilty to charges arising from three North County beatings. Charges against one athlete have been dropped for lack of evidence, and charges against yet another are expected to be dropped soon.

In all, seven juveniles and two adults have been charged. Monday's plea leaves only two of the juveniles, both football stars, awaiting trial.

The adults both face trial in Vista Superior Court; one has already been convicted of misdemeanor battery in one of the incidents.

The Leucadia family was attacked in the driveway of their home June 25 in what began as a dispute about a rowdy late-night party.

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