BROOKFIELD (WISN) — A soccer referee was attacked Sunday during a fight after the game was halted for rough play. One player who threw a punch was only 12 years old.
Cellphone video caught what happened at the end of a match Sunday at the Midwest Orthopedic Sports Complex in Brookfield.
The referees, in fluorescent green, had just halted the game because of rough play. The team from Illinois wearing orange, made up of boys under age 19, began arguing when one threw a water bottle at a referee.
That referee then ran over to the boy telling him to stop when he was punched by one player, and then the same one who threw the bottle, a 12-year-old boy, punched him square in the jaw.
“I was trying to make sure everything was safe, and I didn’t expect … never in a million years would I have thought somebody would throw a punch at a referee,” said Terry From, who was attacked.
From, of New Berlin, loves youth soccer. He referees more than 200 high school and club games a year. He said he’s never seen anything like this before.
“This is just way off the charts. Never ever, ever do you hit a referee,” From said. “Today, I’m still having the headaches from it. My jaw still clicks. I can’t open and close it the way I used to before. I can’t chew food unless it’s soft.”
Brookfield police arrested two 17-year-olds and the 12-year-old, giving them citations for battery and disorderly conduct, and then released them to their parents.
“The punishment should be much more severe than what they gave them. I was shocked to hear that, that all they got was citations. This is unbelievable to me. They’re just going to do it again,” From said.
From told WISN 12 News he hasn’t heard a word from the players, their parents or the team.
He plans to talk to the Waukesha County district attorney to ask her to file criminal charges in the case even though that wasn’t recommended by Brookfield police.