PISCATAWAY, N.J.(CBSNewYork) — A Piscataway Little League coach is calling an umpire out, accusing him of a violent altercation on the field in front of young children and their parents last week.
The alleged incident occurred Friday night after the umpire apparently called a strike on a pitch that bounced in front of the catcher.
“The umpire was rushing the game along,” Coach Joe Bellamy told 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg. “I said, ‘What’s the rush? You’re cheating the kids.”
1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg reports
Bellamy said 21-year-old umpire Dave Delnegro III then became enraged and the two engaged in a heated argument that quickly escalated.
“We walked up to one another, we had words and he at that time assaulted me — punched me in the face four to five times,” Bellamy said.
The umpire faces assault charges but maintains he feared for his safety and acted in self-defense. Delnegro claims Bellamy became verbally abusive and made physical contact.
The 40-year-old coach insists he never threatened Delnegro.
“I never rose my hand, I never clenched my fist, I never shoved him, I never did anything,” Bellamy said.
“I regret that the kids had to witness that but I can’t control another adult losing his cool,” Bellamy said. “I had more than enough chances if I wanted to hit him back but it just wasn’t going to happen.”
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