New Canaan youth softball coach charged with punching umpire in the face
Published 3:35 pm, Wednesday, July 27, 2011
WILTON -- A disputed call at third base sparked a fracas that ended with a youth softball coach being charged with punching a tournament official in the face, police said.
Terrence Dinan, 38, of Paradise Hill Road in New Canaan, was charged with second-degree breach of peace, in the incident Sunday, which broke out after police say Dinan and his wife were ejected from the game for arguing a controversial safe call.
Andrea Dinan, 37, was also charged with second-degree breach of peace, Wilton police said.
Police say Terrence Dinan, who was coaching his daughter's 10-and-under Ridgefield softball team, punched Steve Kolitz, 53, of New Milford, as the latter tried to escort him off the field at Middlebrook School.
The couple will be arraigned Aug. 8 in Norwalk Superior Court.
A call to a number listed as belonging to Terrence Dinan was not returned Wednesday afternoon.
Police say as Dinan and his wife marched off the field, the couple yelled obscenities at the umpire who had ejected them, Kolitz said.
Kolitz, the tournament's umpire supervisor and a 20-year umpiring veteran, said he rushed down to the field from the stands to help diffuse the situation.
"After multiple curses, and flipping me off several times, she (Andrea Dinan) finally left the field," Kolitz said Wednesday by phone.
He said he turned to find Terrence Dinan staring him down from a few feet away. The police reports says that Dinan hit Kolitz in the jaw as the official tried to push him away.
According to the report, Terrence and Andrea Dinan told police they did not who Kolitz was.
"The kids were on the field crying, from both teams, embarrassed (and) hurt.," Kolitz said. "The game ended, based on time, during that situation."
Kolitz said he hopes the incident will help spur legislation to protect sports officials around the state.
"People need to know to be hitting anybody at anytime in a sports game (is unacceptable)," he said. "They need to be accountable as coaches for the sportsmanship they're showing to their team."
Contact Libor Jany at firstname.lastname@example.org or 203-731-3350. Follow him at twitter.com/ljanyNT.