Colorado Police Searching For Suspects After Video Of Parents Brawling At Youth Baseball Game Goes Viral
Police are on the hunt for suspects after a video of a group of parents getting into a physical altercation at a youth baseball game began widely circulating on social media.
The game, which took place this past Saturday in Lakewood, Colorado at West Gate Elementary School was between teams comprised of 7-year-old players.
The trouble all reportedly started after parents and coaches began getting upset with the 13-year-old umpire's calls.
Yes, you read that correctly.
One call in particular apparently sent the coaches of one of the teams over the edge, leading to the all-out brawl that is said to have involved 15-20 adults.
In front of 7 year-olds, over the calls made by a 13 year-old.
Teen umpire's family says a warning about bad language led to brawl at youth baseball game https://t.co/6IB5zJDTB8— 11Alive News (@11Alive News) 1560988023.0
After getting a copy of the video, the Lakewood Police Department shared the footage in an attempt to identify the people involved.
These adults took over the field and began assaulting each other on 6/15 during a youth baseball game. We're lookin… https://t.co/FXYilLWu82— Lakewood Police (@Lakewood Police) 1560894353.0
Police have cited five people involved in the fight so far, but are still on the hunt for more individuals.
Additionally, the Bear Creek Junior Sports Association, which runs the league, cancelled the remainder of the season for the two teams involved, and has indefinitely removed all coaches and parents who participated in the brawl.
A grandparent of one of the players told Denver7 of the incident:
"The three coaches from the other team went up to the umpire and I couldn't actually hear what they were saying but it just didn't look right that three coaches were standing around and one little boy was just standing there."
After a coach from the opposing team put his arm around one of the coaches, all hell broke loose.
The grandparent continued:
"Then everything went crazy and you couldn't even keep your eyes on all of it. I turned and told my daughter to get my grandson out of there."
In the beginning of the video, you can see the players running off the field as some of the adults try to shelter them from the fight. Some parents reportedly even took the boys from one team behind some trees away far away from the baseball diamond to shield them.
A brawl broke out at a children's baseball game near Denver. https://t.co/QfJ1ltnQmn— USA TODAY (@USA TODAY) 1560958920.0
@LakewoodPDCO Looks like at the beginning the kids are on the field and someone(s) rushed them off. Thanks goodness… https://t.co/sTXWZ7IRGe— Marty McClellan (@Marty McClellan) 1560963284.0
Many of the kids were understandably crying as parents and grandparents called 911.
And, believe it or not, it wasn't the first time the two teams had gotten into it with each other.
At another meeting earlier in the season, parents from the two teams reportedly exchanged some heated words.
People who watched the viral video of the incident were appalled.
This is ridiculous it’s a YOUTH baseball game. This is also why it is hard to find people who want to umpire. When… https://t.co/7CZYUL10jJ— Christina (@Christina) 1560897054.0
And these leagues can do better, too. No 13-year-old should be in this position. Six years older than the players,… https://t.co/62J7C1WEqR— Robert Sanchez (@Robert Sanchez) 1560970972.0
@LakewoodPDCO Disgraceful. Might be time to ban parents from the games. It's been suggested that parents should go… https://t.co/wb2RZnefPz— Adam Gibson (@Adam Gibson) 1560955467.0
Little League, although not affiliated with this youth baseball organization, also weighed in to condemn the actions of the parents and coaches involved.
We've seen the despicable actions at the Bear Creek Junior Baseball Association in Lakewood, CO. While it has no af… https://t.co/PnmLvJxxqC— Little League (@Little League) 1560978477.0
Unfortunately altercations like this are not all that uncommon in youth sports.
The state director of USSSA Baseball, Tate Shetterly, told Denver7:
"I think it's getting more aggressive. I think we are seeing more of this over the past few years. Adults get out of control and don't realize they're around kids and aren't held accountable for their actions anymore."
But the organization is taking steps to make sure parents are punished for this kind of behavior, meaning lifetime bans for anyone involved. Their policy also instructs parents to immediately call police if things start to escalate.
If you have any information about the fight, please call the Lakewood Police Department at 303-987-7111.