Police are investigating incidents involving players and parents following a football game at Thomas A. Stewart Athletic Field on Saturday night.
Police were called to the Armour Rd. facility after the Peterborough Wolverines and Toronto Jr. Argos Ontario Football Conference senior varsity game.
Peterborough police Staff Sgt. Marc Habgood said there are allegations a player was struck by a helmet, another of a player being spit on and also of interaction between parents in the stands.
“We can’t confirm anything right now so we’re looking for video from the parents and from the school,” Habgood said. “There have been allegations from both sides.”
There were no significant injuries, he said, and it’s premature to say if charges will be laid.
It’s difficult to sort through a situation where there are many conflicting stories and no conclusive video, he said. Cameras for the game had been shut off by this point.
There is a school security camera, Habgood said, an investigators were trying to obtain it on Monday to see if it captured the incident.
“Even the helmet swing, one side is saying he was hit with a helmet and the other side is saying, no, no, he was just swinging it to keep the players away,” he said.
“Everyone and their brother has a video but no one seems to have the video we need.”
Wolverines SV head coach John Parkes said he saw a Toronto player strike one of his players in the helmet with a helmet. He said his player was struck repeatedly until he was forced to the ground as supported by damage to his helmet. He acknowledges he didn’t see if his player did anything to instigate a reaction.
“One of their players was swinging what looked like a cannonball but it was his helmet,” Parkes said. “He was just unloading and knocking one of our players over the head with it.”
Jr. Argos head coach Carlo Oronati said the referee’s report states the incident was started by a Wolverines player. Oronati denies his player struck the Peterborough player with a helmet.
“Our guy was seen swinging his helmet with three guys coming towards him backing up to try to ward them off,” Oronati said. “Obviously, swinging your helmet is an act of stupidity. That’s why we have police and they are investigating the matter and we’ll stand by whatever they decide.
Oronati said the game, won by Toronto 29-19, was getting rough towards the end with a lot of penalty flags. He said he called a timeout to instruct his players to keep their cool.
“It was an unfortunate incident that takes away from what was a very hard fought, good football game,” said Oronati.
All indications are the incident was limited to a handful of players. Parkes said coaches on both sides and the officials had things settled down before police arrived.
“It became so dramatic because it was witnessed by over 200 fans,” Parkes said.
The OFC usually acts quickly when handing out discipline so they may know early in the week if suspensions will result, he said.
Oronati said the conflicting stories will make it difficult for the OFC to reach a conclusion.
Original Article By:
The Peterborough Examiner
Date: Jun 25, 2018