A North Carolina father was arrested and charged with simple assault after he tackled his son’s wrestling opponent during a tournament. Barry Lee Jones of Harrisburg was said to be attending the match in Kannapolis between his son, a student at Hickory Ridge High School, and another student from Southeast Guilford High School when he rushed down from the bleachers and got involved following a call from the ref that he didn’t agree with, Fox 8 reports. Looks like he should have stayed seated.
- It’s unclear why exactly Jones got involved. The North Carolina High School Athletic Association says that the expert on the mat at the time gave a hand signal displaying that the SGHS student’s move was illegal. However, it’s unclear whether that had anything to do with Jones’ decision to rush down and tackle him. Thankfully, the student athlete wasn’t harmed.
- Everyone found Jones’ behavior completely unacceptable. Sharon Contreras, the Superintendent of Schools for Guilford County, said in a statement: “It’s very unfortunate, and it just shows a society that I feel sometimes we’re just losing all decorum. I want to say that the parents from that high school wrote us a lovely letter saying they were equally appalled. It’s not who they are as a community. And I certainly apologize to the students at both high schools who experienced that, particularly the student who was attacked.”
- Even the parents of other athletes on the team are disgusted. Southeast Guilford High School Wrestling shared a statement on behalf of Hickory Ridge Wresting Team parents in which they admitted that they were “in shock, horror and disbelief by the inconceivable action of one parent on a wrestler.” They added: “We don’t understand it nor would we ever condone it.”
- Jones will hopefully be punished for his reckless crime. Following his arrest, Jones was booked into Cabarrus and was given a $1,000 secured bond. While he’s unlikely to spend any time behind bars for his crime, hopefully he’ll get enough of a punishment that he’ll think twice about doing a similar thing again. Oh, and some anger management might be helpful.