An Atlanta-area high school football coach has been arrested after he punched a student.
An online video appears to show a coach at Benjamin E. Mays High School on the sidelines hitting a student in the stomach. The player can be seen stumbling backward slightly and doubling over.
The incident took place in the first quarter of the school’s game against Douglas County High School at Eddie. S Henderson Stadium in midtown Atlanta.
As video of the incident began to circulate on social media, many expressed outrage at the actions of the volunteer coach.
The coach appeared visibly upset and yelled at the player before striking him, which caused the player to double over in pain. After the volunteer coach punched the student in the stomach, he was escorted off the field by police, according to a district spokesperson.
The coach will be charged with simple battery and will also face administrative charges from the district. He was taken into police custody during the game.
It was reported that the coach, who has not been identified, is a volunteer coach and is not a classroom instructor. He has been removed from his coaching duties, according to the district.
The Atlanta Public Schools system acknowledged the incident and released the following statement.
“A lay coach for Mays High School, who is not a classroom instructor, is in police custody after an incident that occurred on the sideline during the school’s game this afternoon against Douglas County High School. Video from the live broadcast of the game appears to show the lay coach physically assaulting a player. The adult will be charged with simple battery and faces administrative charges from the district as well.
“The safety and well-being of all APS students remains a high priority for the district and all APS employees are held to the highest standard of conduct and professionalism.”
Benjamin E. Mays High School ended up losing the game 42-48 to Douglas County High School.
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