A Little League tee-ball game in Kentucky descended into chaos when a dozen parents engaged in a nasty fight over an umpire’s call – leaving young players in tears.
The brawl erupted on Monday at a baseball field in Stanton after the coach of one team of kids ranging in age from five to seven stormed the field and threw his hat down at home plate.
Viral video of the incident showed the coach being confronted by at least 12 other adults who began hurling obscenities and even came to physical blows in front of the children.
One man was seen ripping off his shirt while other participants were heard shouting insults including ‘piece of s**t’ and ‘sorry a** excuse’ between punches.
A coach in the red shirt threw his hat down and began arguing with the umpire over what he perceived as a bad call and then lashed out at the other team’s coaches all while a child looks on at home plate
Parents and umpires tried to separate the agitated coaches and parents at home plate
But verbal confrontation quickly escalated into a physical brawl, and people joined the scrum while others grabbed the kids
Bystanders watched in disbelief as adults went into an all-out brawl on the field of a Little League game
Some parents jumped in to hold some of the combatants back and settle the scene down
It doesn’t appear criminal charges will be filed as the rec league in Kentucky handled the situation with internal discipline
A medal and trophy ceremony that was scheduled to take place after the game was derailed when police responding to a 911 call from a witness arrived to separate the crowd.
The parent who filmed the ordeal summed it up by exclaiming: ‘This is a f**king kids’ game! Where’s my f**king kid?’
Over several minutes of chaos, some parents were seen rushing into the melee to break it up while others pulled their children out of harm’s way.
An off-duty police officer ended up calling 911, according to WKYT. The cop was heard telling dispatchers: ‘Give me a couple of units of to the city park. They are getting pretty wild at the T-ball field believe it or not.
At this point, the fight was slowing down and people were starting to calm down and separate
Jimmy Smith, one of the coaches, said he was attacked and reacted but ‘would never fistfight anyone in front of kids’
‘They’ve had a fistfight in the middle of the field, we have them separated now, but they might do it in the parking lot again so get out whoever in on the Stanton PD out here.’
The war continued in the comments section of Facebook videos of the scrum with the two coaches – Steve Randall and Jimmy Smith – and their supporters pointing the finger at each other.
‘I never touched anyone,’ Smith said on his Facebook page. ‘Yes, I was upset over a bad call, but I would never fistfight anyone in front of kids! I will stand up for my team 10/10 times, and you tell me one coach who wouldn’t?
‘So I guess the other team didn’t like me disputing the call and their coach threw his hat at another coach on my team, and then he got in my face! So get your facts straight!!!’
Knox posted a video of the brawl and said it was a terrible showing for the kids who just wanted to play the game
Other parents intervened saying it was was poor example for the kids.
‘I was VERY upset my kid along with everyone’s kids that had to see witness that last night!’ parent Destani Renaye Knox, whose daughter played for one of the teams, wrote on Facebook.
‘Its really sad these kids that played hard all season and put their hearts on that field didn’t get to finish their championship game because “adults” wanted to act like this….. at a T-ball game……. I can’t even.’
By the end of the night, cooler heads started to prevail.
Steve Randall, one of the coaches appeared to send an olive branch after the dust settled
Randall posted on Facebook and tagged rival coach Smith, writing: ‘You wanna make this right? At this point all I care about is getting these kids what they deserve. You call me tomorrow and let’s schedule a time we can have both teams at the field and hand them their deserved trophy.
‘What you did was wrong, what I did was wrong and it was a disservice to the kids. We name the Rangers and Reds co-champions and be done with it. You go your way I’ll go mine. I will be waiting for your phone call tomorrow.’
The Stanton police in Kentucky were looking into charges, but it seems to have been handled in-house by the Stanton rec league without criminal charges.
The Stanton City Parks & Rec Board met Tuesday and said ‘there will be disciplinary actions taken against individuals’ but those will not be made public.
Moving forward, the Stanton City Park policies and Stanton Parks & Rec Baseball leagues hosted by the Stanton City Park implemented ‘a zero-tolerance policy on verbally assaulting the umpire/referee, scorekeeper or any other game official,’ and umpires should eject the offender immediately.
The group also announced changes for the 2022 season, which include removing the scorekeeping and scoreboard access from all tee-ball games.