ROSEVILLE, Calif. (KOVR) – A football father in California attacked a referee, running into him and knocking him to the ground, in a shocking moment captured on film.
The video shows the father of football, identified by the Placer County District Attorney’s Office as 34-year-old Vicente Robles running across the pitch and blind referee Andrew Reali throwing him to the ground. Robles then stands over Reali, yelling at her.
“I felt like I was hit by a train,” Reali said. “It was by far the hardest blow I’ve ever suffered in my life. It was pretty crazy. It happened so fast.
The incident happened Nov. 17 at a boys’ under-16 soccer game in Roseville, California.
Reali says Robles’ son disputed a call against him and followed the referee off the field. The teenager got in his face, the referee said, and he pushed him back.
“And that’s when the parent on the other side of the pitch came and attacked me,” Reali said.
Police investigated the incident and sent their findings to the district attorney’s office.
“I think what we see in this video is incredibly shocking. This action by an aloof parent is clearly not appropriate,” said Rob Baquera, spokesman for Roseville Police.
Robles was charged Monday with one count of misdemeanor battery against a sports official. His arraignment date is set for December 8.
The youth match was part of the NorCal Premier Soccer organization, which suspended the coach of Robles’ son for failing to control his team’s spectators. A disciplinary committee is recommending that the team be expelled from all competitions until June next year.
Reali is fine now and says the attack won’t stop him from getting back on the pitch.
“That’s not going to stop me. I want young referees to see this and say, “You know what, if this happens to you, don’t let it affect your life.” You can’t let this stuff affect you,” he said.
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