Charged With Assaulting A Referee? Here Are Some Defenses That You Can Claim


In the heat of a sporting event that you're coaching, it's easy to find yourself in an explosive argument with the referee. Ideally, nothing will escalate beyond words, but there are often cases of coaches and game officials getting into physical confrontations. If your argument with a referee went too far, the authorities may have been called — and it's possible that you could find yourself facing assault charges. While you're likely to feel embarrassed about bringing such negative attention to your team, getting the charges dropped can restore some dignity. You'll need to hire an attorney whose specialty is assault cases and work on defenses such as these.

You Were Protecting A Player

A coach has an obligation to protect his or her players, and this goal encompasses a number of things. Sometimes, a referee will cross a line and get physical with a player. For example, if two competing players were verbally sparring with one another, the referee may have gotten in between the players and pushed them apart. If you looked over and saw the referee push one of your players to the ground, you might have understandably gone onto the field to confront the referee — and it could have gotten physical. In such a scenario, your best defense will be to get your attorney to argue that you were protecting a player.

You Were Concerned About Your Safety

Sports officials needs to be an authoritative presence at all times, but there can be instances of referees behaving inappropriately. If you were shouting at the referee throughout the game — something that occurs in many different sports — he or she could have grown tired of your verbal barrage and done something physical to you. For example, the referee could have approached you on the sideline and pushed you away from the field. If you pushed the referee back, your best defense is to argue that because of his or her violent initiation, you were afraid for your safety.

You Had No Intention In A Melee

When a sporting event turns into a physical melee, coaches on both sides often scramble to get their players under control. In a sea of bodies jostling together, it's possible that you pushed or grabbed a referee completely by accident. For example, you could argue how you were trying to pull one of your players away from the fray, but because of the bodies in close contact with one another, you accidentally grabbed the referee and pulled him or her. Such a scenario doesn't involve any intent to commit an assault, so this can be an effective defense for your attorney to present.

For more information and tips, work with local criminal law services


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