BRANCHBURG — The 72-year-old umpire who suffered a broken jaw and concussion in a youth baseball game has filed a lawsuit against the parent-coach accused of hitting him.
James Neely was officiating a 13U baseball game at White Oak Park in Branchburg on June 4 when a coach from a visiting Staten Island team began insulting him with “extensive profanity” in front of the young players, the lawsuit alleges. .
The civil complaint said Neely ejected the coach, identified as Jerry Otero, 40, of Staten Island. In response, the parent-coach punched Neely “without warning or justification”.
Otero is charged with aggravated assault and assault at a youth sporting event. Acting Somerset County District Attorney Annmarie Taggart said Otero fled the scene before police arrived but turned himself in more than two weeks later.
“Our focus must be the children,” Neely said in a statement. “We need to make sure youth sports remains a place where they can learn and grow in a safe environment. I hope to be on the pitch one day soon for the kids.”
Along with Otero, the lawsuit names the New York Prospects, Prospects President Frank Cambria, and the US Amateur Baseball League, which hosted the tournament that day. The Prospects is a non-profit organization that operates youth baseball teams on Staten Island.
Neely is also suing the Staten Island team’s parents, who have not yet been identified. The lawsuit claimed the parents encouraged the assault by yelling at Neely and taunting him after the punch.
At least one parent was heard saying Neely “got what he deserved”, according to the lawsuit.
Neely had remained anonymous until his lawyer, Andrew O’Conner, announced the lawsuit on Tuesday.
“People’s behavior in youth travel sports has gotten completely out of hand,” O’Conner said. “Now we will seek justice for Mr Neely in court and ensure that children at all sporting events are protected.”
Rick Rickman is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Click here to contact an editor about a comment or correction for this story.
Beautiful Sunflower Fields to Visit in New Jersey 2022
Among the reasons why the “Garden State” remains an apt nickname for New Jersey – the end of summer means the arrival of sunflower season.
There are at least six domains, spanning the state. Some are in bloom as early as early August, while others should peak from late August to late September.
It is always advisable to call or email before you go if the weather seems to be an issue.
This is where legal NJ weed is sold
The number of recreational cannabis dispensaries continues to grow, with nearly two dozen state approvals granted since the first adult recreational sales in the state in April. Here is where the open sites are.
Netflix’s Most Popular English TV Shows
These are the most popular TV shows ever to air on Netflix (in English), based on hours watched during their first 28 days on air.