A Philadelphia-area baseball coach has been suspended after he allegedly choked a 12-year old boy during a baseball training event last month for a youth league.
Upper Moreland (Willow Grove, Pa.) baseball coach Kenneth Irwin was placed on administrative leave Wednesday when school officials learned of the alleged incident, Upper Moreland School District Superintendent Robert Milrod told Philly.com.
The 52-year-old Irwin has been charged with strangulation, disorderly conduct and harassment.
On Feb. 16, police were called to the Newtown (Pa.) Athletic Club after a parent of the boy complained that Irwin had assaulted her son during a baseball training event.
Linda Mitchell, a spokeswoman for the athletic club, told Philly.com Thursday that Irwin didn’t work for the club but for the group that rented space at the club.
The Bucks County Courier Times reported that, after tryouts for a Newtown baseball league at the facility and while players were cleaning up, Irwin allegedly tossed a plastic bucket at the boy, hitting him in the head.
The boy then allegedly threw baseballs toward Irwin and hit him in the leg, the newspaper reported citing court documents. As the boy picked up another ball, Irwin allegedly rushed toward him, ordered him to drop the ball, pushed the boy, then put his hands on the child’s neck and squeezed, according to the Courier Times. While trying to breathe, the boy became tangled in the batting cage netting and was pushed into a wall by Irwin, the newspaper reported.
Court records don’t indicate whether Irwin was taken into custody, per the Courier Times, but Irwin faces a May 12 preliminary hearing on the charges.