Many Pleased, But Some Say League Has Gone Too FarBy Hazel Sanchez

TENAFLY, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A New Jersey Little League is taking safety up a notch. For the first time they’re requiring all their volunteers be fingerprinted. We’re talking coaches and concession stand workers, too.

Some parents, however, are crying foul, CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez reports.

When your little ones head out to a field of dreams they are eager to learn the game. They will trust everybody.

To make sure parents can trust everybody teaching their children, the Tenafly Little League runs background checks on all their coaches and for the first time they’re requiring those volunteers be fingerprinted.

Most of the coaches are fathers like Johnny Garcia.

“I’m fine with it. I have nothing to hide. I’m pretty good,” Garcia said.

“I think it’s a good thing. You can’t be extra cautious, especially towards our kids,” parent Vanessa Semone said.

The coaches aren’t the only ones who are required to be fingerprinted. Any adult volunteer that comes in contact with the children — from concessions to t-shirt vendor — is required be fingerprinted.

“It just seems like it’s over-diligent,” parent Kevin Pierce said.

Some parents who only occasionally volunteer said the league is going too far.

“I’m helping gather up the balls or I’m helping rake the field and now I need a background check,” Pierce said. “It’s an intrusion that is unnecessary without a probable cause.”

Tenafly Little League president John Preolo said the league had to require fingerprinting this year because of a much-needed grant.

“To get the grant there is certain criteria that had to be met. One of them is the fingerprinting process. If the town didn’t agree to get coaches and volunteers fingerprinted, I don’t think we would have gotten the money,” Preolo said.

Still, the debate continues.

“I think it’s a good rule for your kids’ safety,” one parent said.

“I think their money is better spent on other things than on me getting background checked,” Pierce added.

However, some may argue you can’t put a price tag on safety.

Volunteers who decide to get fingerprinted may have to go to nearby Paramus because Tenafly does not provide that service.

Think the league has gone too far? Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

Hazel Sanchez

Comments (166)
  1. jimmycoomer says:

    Sadly this is the only way to keep the boys safe from sodomites.

    1. marc says:

      The trouble is fingerprinting doesn’t weed out predators unless they’ve already been caught. Here in Maine teachers have to be fingerprinted but since that law took effect there have been multiple cases of abuse by teachers. Fingerprinting will not stop anything but it will make people more lax that everything is fine. It is a government intrusion designed to make political leaders look good.

  2. bill e. bob says:

    i guess you don’t remember all those 20 yo dominicans pretending to be 13, do you?

  3. Moral Truth says:

    doesnt it violate the constitution if you fingerprint volunteers and thats the moral truth

    1. ebpowell says:

      No. No it doesn’t.
      The little league is a PRIVATE entity. You have the option to not participate if you don’t like the rules.

      1. Moral Truth says:

        thank you ebpowell for informing me and thats the moral truth.

      2. JT says:

        If they are private then why the grant money? Where do you think this grant money comes from? Do we taxpayers have “the option to not participate” or contribute to this grant?

      3. davec says:

        WRONG ANSWER. You have the option of a CIVIL SUIT for them playing this dirty game.

        Sorry, chump, they cant play that childish game (youll comply or well take our ball and play without you)

        This is doen in PUBLIC with the coercion of the Government

      4. dromm says:

        I agree.
        Many groups have been doing background checks for anyone who comes in contact with children for a while. Many of these are actual organizations with paid staff who operate as businesses or non-profit organizations. Someone has to have access to, and or approve/decline someone who has a flag. The first time private information is leaked by a little league official will be the financial demise of the league, grant or not.

  4. rc says:

    You gotta be kidding. Good Lord this is becoming more and more absurd by the day

  5. Kevin J says:

    “Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”
    Benjamin Franklin

    Wake up America!! Big Brother is doing you no favors.
    Has everone forgot about the 4th Amendment?
    Oh that’s right, they never learned the US Constitution to begin with!!

    I urge everyone to read and LEARN the US Constitution!
    Maybe then you would not be so eager to let our government run rough shod over you.

    I’ve never been fingerprinted nor will I ever let myself be fingerprinted under the guise of “security”.

  6. nocoteabagger says:

    I can vote for president without an ID. I can run for president without showing my birth certificate. But my kid must show a birth certificate to play baseball, and I must be fingerprinted to support my kid in little league. Is there anyone besides me that is confused about all this?

    1. dinop says:

      I’m not confused by it, I don’t want someone molesting or killing my kid. I don’t care if our president is an american citizen, the constitution was trampled over long ago.

      1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

        Then just lock your children up at home – finger printing will NOT stop what you appear to be worried about… just lock them up and let them live life as a recluse and not KNOW how to handle themselves.
        Education is key – fingerprinting ONLY takes away our freedom.
        And your attitude, is the REASON it’s been trampled on… get your head out of the sand and turn your brain back on…
        Life cannot be perfect and to make such a statement is very jevenile.

  7. rc says:

    Simply ABSURD

  8. Terri says:

    Parent ought to fingerprint teachers too.

    List of teachers who have sex with students.

    1. krinklek says:

      I agree with Terri 100%.The teachers here in Texas has to pass a criminal(sp)background and be fingerprinted and that stopped alot of perverts slinding through the cracks and bein a teacher etc.
      Krinkle from Texas

  9. Fat Lester says:

    Liberal NY Nazis and their police state.

    1. Michael H. says:

      Tenafly is in New Jersey.

      I mean, it’s at the top of the f-ing article. Is it too much for you to read that far?

  10. Thomas says:

    Soccer parents. I swear they do such damage to society with their misshapen perceptions of risk.

  11. Paula Noland says:

    If parents took the time to meet the coaches and volunteers then there would not be a problem. PARENTS should use little league as a chance to spend more time with their children. PARENTS should NOT use little league as a baby sitting service.

    1. Hannah says:

      I agree with Paula all the way, however, they can and WILL use little league as a baby-sitting service and no-one can stop that (without making insane, unreasonable laws that will completely kill little league). Fingerprinting is not a new idea. It has been going on for a long time. Why is being debated this time? Maybe somebody missed this, but, they are working with children!!! Hear me that time? WORKING WITH CHILDREN. The little league has the right to fingerprint and they are using that right. Maybe this shouldn’t be a nationaly debated subject. Maybe they should ask the children’s parents themselves!!!
      I’m 13 and gotta say that I would not be comfortable with some perv at the snack shack. Although they may not do anything, they can and it’s just really freaky!!!

      1. Ellis says:

        If your children haven’t been taught how to avoid dangerous situations, no amount of fingerprinting or background checks are going to save them. This is nothing but feel-good security theatre.

  12. Steve Roberts says:

    This is the mentality that is destroying the country. Tell me, has there been a massive upsurge in murder, assaults and rapes by Little League volunteers? IIF so is it even statistically significant. Believe me, kids today face far more danger to their lives from overprotective parents than form child molesters. With all the multiple layers of bubble wrap used to protect them, kids are not developing the skill to take care of themselves when they become adults.

    I am so glad I grew up in the 60’s and 70′ when parents would encourage their kids to go out and play unsupervised and unseen for the whole day. The threats kids supposedly face are overblown way out of proportion and that is how we have come to the point that 26 year old adults are considered kids that should be covered by their parents insurance.

    1. cynthia says:

      The story behind the story is always buried somewhere, generally the middle. This is clearly stated: it is not about safety but about the grant money.

      1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

        Uh… the ‘grant money’ is the catalist for loss of more freedom. Everything comes with a price and I choose not to SELL my freedom, how about you?

      2. JT says:

        Absolutely!! Nothing to do with safety at all. All about the grant money. And I’m certain these stipulations on the grant money were added by some lawyer just to “protect” them from being sued. Nothing to do with safety is right!!

    2. my $.02 says:

      Exactly. The news loves to sensationalize what are tragic events and most folks, educated in public schools with no critical thinking ability, extrapolate into near paranoia. Kids are more likely to be hurt on bicycles or by lawn mowers than to be molested by a little league volunteer, but I doubt the same advocates for finger-printing are advocating a ban on bicycle and lawn-mower use by minors. This isn’t a rational look at risk, but sheer paranoia assuaged by a flawed “solution.”

  13. Dee says:

    Hey in CA they are trying to ban trucks from driving on the road next to a sports field because they don’t want the kids breathing truck pollution. That will be next for you. New York always has to copy CA when it comes to being a nanny state

    1. kP says:

      Tenafly is in New Jersey

  14. Reality Check says:

    This is outrageous, pretty soon the city will be as bad as the BIRTHERS and want Birth Certificates in addition to Finger Prints.

    Outrage. Oh wait, Illegal Aliens, Muslims and half white Presidents will be exempt, well then it is OK.

    1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

      Sad, but true – they ALREADY require birth certificates – can’t have any question about the age of the players! Guess illegals can’t play after all, but they CAN be spectators – hanging around the kids… hummmm…

  15. DUAH FILE says:

    How many REPEAT OFFENDERS have been finger printed? It didnt seem to stop them from a 2nd crime

  16. Roy says:

    I say dna…….forget the fingerprints…………

    1. joe says:

      You are the perfect type of cattle the government loves.

  17. DUAH FILE says:

    QUESTION: How many

  18. Sam says:

    The goal we seem to be striving for is maximum security. The only place that’s achieved is in prison.

  19. Mary says:

    Illegal Aliens will be exempt-Of course

  20. glen says:

    Fingerprints and security checks have been required for years in children’s leagues in Calimexico.

  21. Joe Nardone says:

    What happens to the fingerprint records after they are checked against the database? Does the government keep them so they can use them to plant evidence against you in the future?

    I am all for the check but please don’t add me to some database when I haven’t done anything but volunteer my time.

    1. joe says:

      Of course they keep them why do you think fingerprinting is required to get the cash from the government,essentially buying what they can’t legally demand from you.Tyranny creeps in slowly doesn’t it?All in the name of safety?How does the government having these fingerprints pick up anything a background check wouldn’t?What is the percentage of molestations that occur with people associated with little league or kids sports of all child molestation’s?Is not the most likely person to molest a child a family member?Should we fingerprint all people with families too?Maybe they should fingerprint everyone at birth then,so the government can keeps us safe from molester’s,typical government logic.

      1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

        What many don’t know, joe, is that now ALL newborns DNA is gathered and put in Big Brother’s DNA data-bank… Research it… Just as scarry, if not more so than this…

  22. clashcityrocker says:

    You suckers believe this is about keeping kids safe. That’s always the canard to get you to comply and abrogate your freedom. It’s for your safety. It’s for the children. And you fall for it every time. The robotic comments such as, “Well, if you have nothing to hide…”, always crack me up. Hey, here’s an idea. Why don’t you let authorities install closed circuit cameras in your home and bedroom to see that there is no abuse going on? After all, it’s for the safety of the kids, and if you have nothing to hide…

  23. BP says:

    ‘Tenafly Little League president John Preolo said the league had to require fingerprinting this year because of a much-needed grant.’ How much was the grant and could they possibly have a few community sponsors instead? Once the children are fingerprinted their prints can be in the National Crime Information Center. As some other commentors have said, parents need to go to all the games, TALK to and watch adults at the game and LOOK THEM IN THE EYE when you do so. We can all be Gladys Kravitz.

    1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

      Sure, attach some money and people readily give up their freedom… sad – VERY sad…

    2. jtsgrandmom says:

      It is disgusting how many people will sell off everyone’s inalienable rights for a buck. Notice the donor remains anonymous. How DARE they?

    3. Wallace Milam says:

      Next, let’s fingerprint t he kids, the players, and then the spectators. Note that Tenafly would not have taken this step without the grant requirements. Is this Tenafly’s Little League or the feds? “For the good of the children,” of course. Orwell would have loved it.

  24. Terry McSweeney says:

    I agree. If you want to work with children, you should be finger printed. If the you diagree, sit in the stands.

    1. jtsgrandmom says:

      THINK it thru! Americans are subjected to warrantless search and illegals pour in unchecked, remain unchecked with impunity? Read up on habeas corpus and probable cause. Short cut, volunteerism is NOT probable cause. You have the right to barter your own rights away for some perception and false promise of safety, but you have NO right to barter away the rest of ours. I don’t expect you, the hopelessly proselytized to understand but shame, shame on you.

    2. CoachEJK says:

      Require a blood test. Check for any communicable deseases. These adults will be in close proximity to our children.
      See, anyone can dream up more and more regulations. This is fun. I think I’ll run for office.

      1. Steve Roberts says:

        Hers some:

        Also any body that owns a gun.
        People that let their kids ride a bike without a helmet.
        People that eat lots of fried food.

        For obvious reasons, people should never let their kids near these dangerous subversive types.

    3. Ellis says:

      If you want to leave your house, you should be fingerprinted. If you disagree, stay home.

      You are ridiculous. This does nothing – zero – to protect kids. It just spreads the paranoia.

  25. woodNfish says:

    The people going along with this are nothing more than useful idiots.

  26. Former Law Enforcement Official says:

    Does anyone else see the complete idiocy of what the Fingerprinters are saying?
    1) Hartshorn would NOT have been caught/ detected b/c the crime wasn’t in the DB. . .2) Does anyone realize those fingerprints will not most likely be run (who’s going to get “around” to running Little League coaches/ volunteer check when budgets are being cut and other more important police matters need to be attended to?). . . 3) Unless the FBI database is used, fingerprints aren’t the most complete background check b/c the states STILL don’t have systems that work correctly — e.g. felons can buy guns even though they are supposed to be banned from doing so b/c the DB is so out of date!. . .4) What ever happened to PARENT RESPONSIBILITY– I would NEVER let my kid go over to a coach’s house with a friend or other parent– KIDS ARE NOT PETS THAT SHOULD ROAM FREELY AROUND THE NEIGBORHOOD.
    YOU FINGERPRINTING IDIOTS ARE GIVING UP YOUR RIGHTS TOO EASILY– here, get on this train,we want to take you to a nice camp where we can make you very warm!
    A Former Law Enforcement Official

    1. jtsgrandmom says:

      Ever hear of You sir, should check it out, you may well find some likeminded. Witnessing the literal nazification of our police, you are a breath of fresh air. Has anyone else noticed our police cars no longer say “To protect and serve” .. but now say “Law Enforcement?” Local police are using up their own personal capital with the public to further ever more gov’t bullying tactics and control. Some towns have even sent SWAT teams for domestic disputes and to pick up teenagers who got into fisticuffs. When formerly supportive citizens like me have lost trust in them and refuse to support them, their causes and refuse to recognize any over reaching authority, you know something they are doing is very wrong. But kudos to you, sir.

    2. davec says:

      It has nothing to do with reality, its about “desensitization” or making people accustomed ot being manupulated.

      I demand that they sign an agreement that theyll be liable for damages, both PERSONALLY and CORPORATELY if my identity is stolen. THAT shakes them up…

  27. Dave says:

    Society is paranoid. Blame this on 20/20 and other shows that make you think your kid is going to be kidnapped if he walks down the street to a friends house. If you all were really that concerned about safety your kids would not drive in a car to their little league practice. They have a higher chance of dying in a car accident on the way to practice than getting pedophiled on the field. You drive them because you don’t care, you should charter a tank to take your kids to practice. You would also have practice inside a secure facility. Do you really care so little for your kids that you have practice outdoors where anyone can walk by? Do you realize how dangerous that is?

  28. Spider says:

    Any adult involved with children should be required to undergo a background and fingerprint check. I can think of only one reason an adult wouldn’t agree to this. They don’t want to be discovered, and that’s exactly the point of the checks. Any society that can’t/won’t protect it’s young is not worthy of going on.

    1. chester arthur says:

      I’ve never been in legal troule,and will not be fingerprinted. to please any whiney little dweeb.Look at reality,for once.Since those in contact with children have been required to submit to fingerprinting,have the cases of abuse gone up or down?How many innocent people,myself included,no longer work with organizations that fingerprint.?There is a real cost in the number of people available for volunteer work with children when you do something this stupid.If fewr people are willing to work with children,doesn’t that increase the chance that someone who has abused children but has never been caught will be the one working with your kids?Are the idiots who think backgrounds checks ‘safeguard’ children really this dim?

    2. Greg from USA says:

      Germany voted the NAZIs into power. The SS used the police files they built up on people to round them up without trial and send them to concentration camps on all kinds of false accusations. If our economy ever collapses and we vote into power radicals, would you want your information out there for the State to exploit? Oh wait, that already happened in 2008…

      If your friend is a communist and your prints are found at his house, don’t you think they would come looking for you too?

  29. kP says:

    Wow, that didn’t take long.

    1. bridgevillepa says:

      Yeah, and it will go on until he’s removed…

    2. 1ConservativeUSA says:

      Tell me where I’m wrong.

  30. joe taylor says:

    If you really want to work with children, then you don’t mind the rules to volunteer or participate. Nobody is forced to be associated with this program. Absolutely nothing is more important than the safety of the children. NOTHING!

    1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

      Don’t be so quick to give up MY freedom… Yes, keep the children safe but sacrificing our freedom and liberties to do so is absurd! I’t’s this kind of mindset which will erode ALL our freedoms. Have you read the Constitution OR The Bill of Rights?

  31. joe taylor says:

    Pierce is the the only adult that questioned the policy, but the writer made it sound that there was a major divide in opinion. 98% of those involved agree with the policy.

    1. Kevin Pierce says:

      Pierce (me) is not the only adult to question is policy. I was the only to agree to appear on camera. Please tell us where you are getting your 98% figure.

      My objection to MY being background checked relates to my relatively minor level of participation in my son’s baseball games. I am not a coach. I am not an assistant coach. I have on occasion, in the past, helped out at practices or games, by playing catch with the odd fielder (the kids pair up to play catch), or by gathering balls as they are thrown in, or by raking the baselines. I have called out the batting order to make sure the next kid is on deck, I have looked for a missing piece of catcher equipment. In short, if I am present, I am willing to be a gofer for the coach, who I know from other kid-related stuff.

      Because I have a relatively long commute I am not present for all games or practices. Even if I am in town, I sometimes just do drop-off if I have other things going on. In short, I am not a committed volunteer; I am merely helpful if I am around.

      I point out all the above because I seek to differentiate my level of participation. The leagues has drawn the line at “Any adult volunteer that comes in contact with the children — from concessions to t-shirt vendor — is required be fingerprinted.” What is not explicitly mentioned is that the fingerprinting is the first step in criminal background check. Do I object to having my background checked? NO. I object to the league spending money on having my background checked, considering the negligible contribution I make to the overall outcome.

      So based upon my level of participation, I am not willing to go through the bureaucratic hassle or incur additional costs for the league.
      I will still play catch with my son, I will still attend the games, and I will still sit in the stands and cheer.

      1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

        Next, they will be fingerprinting spectators – don’t laugh – these usefull idiots would submit to that as well. After all, don’t these kids walk by spectators coming to the game and leaving? Oh, how about a sudo-cop attending the games? Or, how about implanting a chip in all the children – that would really keep them safe! It’s coming and brain-off people like thiss will think it is a great idea!

  32. Coach Paul says:

    The illusion of safety with a fingerprint? These people don’t even require base runners to wear helmets – see the picture. The interest is in money and control. A background check can be done without the prints.

  33. Tom says:

    Why would anyone have a problem with this? if you are not a pedophile or a criminal then you have nothing to hide. If you don’t like this then don’t volunteer to work with kids. If this had been around always and everywhere many kids would have been saved from pedophiles and kidnappings. In the past I may have thought this is going too far but, given the current state of things and how we are seeing daily how children are being abused and tortured, that make this a SMALL step in the right direction to proctecting kids. Honestly, I’m at the point where I think you should be required to have a license to be a parent, prove that you are mentally sound and financially secure.

    1. We are a REPUBLIC! says:

      am sure you support the Patriot Act as well? Give up your freedoms but leave MINE alone…

    2. Ellis says:

      >if you are not a pedophile or a criminal then you have nothing to hide.

      Ugh. You’d have been perfectly comfortable in communist East Germany.

  34. common sense says:

    I understand the need for caution as a father who has spent countless hours as a volunteer my child’s school and as a volunteer at the local Little League. I believe that we need to be careful who spends time with our children. I also think that we sometimes go above and beyond taking extraordinary measures to give ourselves “peace of mind” when a common sense approach would likely be less costly and perhaps more reliable since all the background checks and finger prints will ONLY tell you if the person has been caught and convicted of a crime. In my mind the common sense approach would be to attend all of your child’s Little League games and practices. It isn’t likely that anything is going to occur with 12 players and 12 sets of parents at each practice and game.

    1. Daisy Girl 96 says:

      “It isn’t likely that anything is going to occur with 12 players and 12 sets of parenst at each practice and game.”

      Are you kidding? For every tragic story of a child that is killed by the “stranger” – around 50 kids are killed at the hands of their own parents! I’d be more worried about what at least one of those 12 kids is going through at home at the hands of their own parents! Also – what about all the teachers that abuse kids – the female ones only get a slap on the wrist – not the same penalties as male teachers! Wake up people – parents, teachers, and other kids are more probable to be the abusers than the mysterious stranger! Wake up and look in the mirror, and look at those other 11 sets of parents you are sitting next to!!!!!

  35. 2smart4u says:


    Wouldnt have happened with finger prints moron. Thats the point.

    Classic response

  36. Andrew Moore says:

    It’s amazing how people willfully give up more and more of their rights.

  37. Surfin Bird says:

    They need to protect themselves

    1. Melissa says:

      We are in Chesterfield County, Virginia (OUTSIDE OF RICHMOND, VA), and we have been doing this for many years. IT WORKS!

  38. Hank Warren says:

    Endless gov’t fingerprinting, yet another violation of our rights. Add it to the list of gov’t violations of our right:
    They violate the 1st Amendment by placing protesters in cages, banning books like “America Deceived II” and censoring the internet.
    They violate the 2nd Amendment by confiscating guns.
    They violate the 4th and 5th Amendment by molesting airline passengers.
    They violate the entire Constitution by starting undeclared wars for foreign countries.
    Impeach Obama and sweep out the Congress.
    (Last link of Banned Book):

    1. Mark Stanley Sr. says:

      This is more than they did to vet Odumbo.

  39. Frank G Anderson says:

    In a sadder sense in many aspects common sense is also missing. I used to coach Little League and managed to do so without even a wayward thought. I know there are predators, and sometimes their rights seem to be given priority over “decent” people, but something is wrong with our country these days. Many of us no longer feel American or act reasonably. Sorry to bring this out in a seemingly unrelated subject, but I think it is related. If all of us did a better job of imbuing our families, friends and colleagues with more social responsibility, we would have more of it.

  40. Copyeditor says:

    The expression is “too,” not “to” far. Besides, the safety of children is paramount especially in this day and age, or haven’t you noticed?

  41. Barry Williams says:

    Sad to say it, but fingerprinting is a prudent step in the safety of children. I don’t like the idea of my fingerprints being on file somewhere and having the chance that they might be misused, but in today’s world you can’t be too careful. Children and adults should be fingerprinted…better safe than sorry.

    Fingerprinting services should be made easy, convenient, inexpensive, and done by a professional.

  42. Steve Arthur Omohundro says:

    u think figerprinting will keep bad guys away same as gun laws will guns from bad guys

  43. Paul says:

    Quite amazing and distressing to see so many people volunteering in such haste to give up their privacy rights to protect themselves from the boogeymen–terrorism, sex predators, what will be next? Of course, they’re terrible, but is there nothing we can do to fight them that doesn’t cost basic liberties? Any liberty that is so open to be bargained away is not an inalienable right, merely a conditional right held at the pleasure of the authorities. If you want to keep it, don’t negotiate it away so lightly.

  44. old nasty says:

    How about sex varification as well.Then at least I’ll know the woman volunteer I’m dating, is really a woman.I mean sometimes getting to third base can be such a shock!

  45. Carl Findlay says:

    Rochdale Village Little League season canceled
    Investigating detective visits 113th Precinct, asks for help in finding victims of alleged sex-offender

    By Ivan Pereira
    Tuesday, March 29, 2011 10:16 PM EDT

    Deputy Inspector Kristel Johnson (l.) speaks alongside Detective Richard Santangelo about the incidents allegedly involving the Rochdale Village Little League coach. Photo by Christina Santucci
    The Rochdale Village Little League coach’s years of alleged sexual misconduct has cost the team its season this year, the police said.

    Detective Richard Santangelo of the Queens Special Victims Squad paid a visit to the 113th Precinct’s community council meeting Monday night to update residents about the case against David C. Hartshorn, who has been charged with several sex crimes against minors by the Queens district attorney’s office.

    Hartshorn was the coach of the housing complex’s Little League and allegedly brought several of his players to his house and touched them inappropriately and had them perform sexual acts that were secretly videotaped, according to the detective.

    Despite being imprisoned more than 20 years ago for sexually abusing kids, the coach was still allowed to lead the team and kept taking advantage of the boys for years, according to Santangelo.

    “He manipulated children for a long time. He was a professional,” he said.

    Due to Hartshorn’s arrest, the Rochdale board of directors did not renew its application with the Little League this year, according to the detective. Little League Baseball confirmed that Rochdale did not renew its application.

    The board did not return phone calls for comment.

    Hartshorn was incarcerated in 1989 after he was arrested on charges of endangering the welfare of a child, but at the time there was no sex offender list and he slipped through the cracks during background checks for the league, according to the detective.

    State Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi (D-Forest Hills) is working on legislation to close loopholes for earlier sex offenders.

    Hartshorn’s alleged abuse against Rochdale players came to light after some of the boys told their parents about his reported activity and the police were eventually involved.

    The coach, who was arrested and charged last month, allegedly committed several sexual acts on three teen boys over the last two years, including one in which he had them play a game of poker and the loser would perform sexual acts with another, the DA’s office said.

    Santangelo said police found several hidden cameras inside Hartshorn’s home that allegedly videotaped the perverted activity between the coach and the players.

    “There are numerous cases where the kids … don’t know they were being videotaped,” he said.

    Hartshorn has been remanded and faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

    Despite numerous pieces of evidence, including several child pornographic videotapes, Santangelo said the case is far from over.

    He and his fellow investigators are still going over the tapes to identify the boys.

    The detective asked the community to come to the precinct if they know anyone who spent time with Hartshorn — especially if they visited his house frequently.

    “If we can put a name to a face on a video, we can put him away for more years,” he said.

    Anyone with information is urged to call Crimestoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), text their tips to 274637 then enter TIP577 or log on to All reports will be kept confidential.

    Reach reporter Ivan Pereira by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4546.

    1. We are a REPUBLIC says:

      This is sad and happens, however, it does NOT support giving up our freedoms. Where were the parents? People can come up with things like this for each and EVERY incident where they want to take away more freedom and rights.
      Fingerprinting is NOT the answere and we will never live in a perfect world…

      “Anyone who trades liberty for security deserves neither liberty nor security”
      “Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”

      Benjamin Franklin

      I would rather have freedom than security, because without freedom, there is NO security!

  46. Carl Findlay says:

    David Hartshorn,….Aynone who thinks that they have a valid objection to fingerprinting individuals associated with any youth activity, especially Little League, should google that name. Mr. Hartshorn was the coach the the Rochdale Little League, Queens, NY until I insisted the parents immediately go to the police and have him arrested for the molestation and rape of young boys!

    Adults have the right to choose not to be fingerprinted and not to be involved with these young children. The children do not have the right to choose the adults they have to deal with. It is our responsibility to provide the maximum protection that we can. By any means necessary.

    1. Loggie says:

      this is the most sensible comment i have read. flying, coaching, and driving are priveledges, not unalienable rights. GET OVER IT. They can finger print me or look up my canal. Who cares.

  47. kendra says:

    no i don,t think they have gone to far with this cause being a parent and aunt 2 my niece and daughters…they have to protected with all of these pedofhiles and such on had these dayz and such….

  48. David says:

    I applaud the league for taking an extra step to protect its children with background checks, fingerprinting, etc. How could any parent volunteer object to being checked themselves? The league should also consider social media background screening because there are often individuals who have yet to be convicted of a crime, but their online user-generated content shows they are a safety risk for working with children. Read this

    1. ThePatriotMuckraker says:

      “How could any parent volunteer object to being checked themselves?”

      “David” is either a useful idiot, or a government agent, out to destroy your liberty with “guilty until proven innocent” & the quack dictatorial notion of “If you have nothing to hide. . .” naturally that makes us all criminals to big daddy government. Sorry “David” it’s called liberty. If you do not like it you can leave. This trouser stain traitor would then go on and sell you the threat of osama been-dead and al-cia-da “hatting us for our freedom.” LOL. What freedom? These traitors are FOS.

      1. Michael H. says:

        “If you do not like it you can leave.”

        If you don’t like it you can not volunteer at this little league organization…

  49. bf says:

    Being finger printed is a very serious matter. Your finger prints are then saved and can at some time be used against you. You have no idea how much power is gained by giving people your finger prints. Parents are idiots if they go along with this seemingly innocent gesture.

    My friend was an assistant coach of a team on Long Island. The head coach did a search on every volunteer and his name came up as a sexual offender. The Coach sent a letter to him saying that he could not volunteer because of this. As it turns out it was a person with the same name in another state. By the time that was figured out the damage was done.

    Protect your children but don’t give up your rights to privacy. You have no idea what the Government can do with this information. Also, when you go to a children’s park do not let them finger print your child or you as a means of identity. That gives them a lot of information regarding you. Be SMART.

    1. Loggie says:

      Wouldnt have happened with finger prints moron. Thats the point.

  50. jeff smith says:

    This is a pedophiles dream. Look for places where a lot of kids are. If any adult has a problem keeping these kids safe, what are they looking to hide. It is a terrible thing that society has gotten to this point, but our kids come first and we must protect them at all costs.

Leave a Reply