VIDEO: Youth hockey coach fired after tackling referee, spitting in his face

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KINGSTON, Mass. (WCVB/CNN) – A youth hockey coach in Massachusetts was caught on camera apparently assaulting a referee in front of his 12-year-old players after he was ejected from the game.

The coach for the 12-and-under New Hampshire Junior Monarchs, who has not been identified, began banging on the door and shouting profanities at the referee during the second period of a game Saturday in Kingston, Massachusetts.

The Monarchs received a minor bench penalty for the coach’s actions, but he kept shouting at the referee, who ultimately decided to eject him from the game. Instead of leaving, the coach walked out onto the ice.

Witnesses say the coach spat in the referee’s face, and the referee pushed him in an incident that was caught on camera. Eugene Binda, the local referee coordinator and the victim’s nephew, claims his uncle did so out of self-defense.

The coach is then seen throwing punches at the referee, and he eventually tackles the official to the ground in front of the 12-year-old players.

“I can’t believe someone would actually do that to a referee,” said Binda, who has officiated hockey at the collegiate and professional levels. “The most disturbing part of the whole video is you watch the players on the ice, and after the altercation, you see some of the kids banging their sticks, like ‘nice job.’”

The coach was eventually escorted off the ice by a fellow Monarchs coach, while the referee, who suffered a few bumps and bruises, finished the game.

The coach who was involved in the fight was fired. He is not currently facing criminal charges.

“This is not something we condone. It was wrong in every form and fashion of what he did. There’s no excuse for it,” said fellow coach Tony Dalessio. “He’ll never coach for the Monarchs again and likely never for USA Hockey again. We’re in favor of anything USA Hockey does to further discipline him.”

Copyright 2020 WCVB, Hearst, Live Barn via CNN. All rights reserved.

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