A video posted to Facebook over the weekend makes a strong case for why being a ref is a thankless job.
In the footage, a man — whom some have identified as a Wichita, Kan., police officer, although the police department would only confirm that he is an employee — shoves a teenage girl, who was working as a referee at the youth basketball game.
Craig Carlson did not attend the game, but he did post the footage of the incident on Facebook.
“This happened today in Augusta Ks… this guy is a Wichita PD officer, who assaulted a 17yr old basketball official during a 5/6th grade game,” he posted. “This is exactly why there is a shortage of officials in sports. This is unacceptable and should be seen and shared.”
In the video, the offender appears on the court and gets into an altercation with the ref before escorting his son off of the court. He can be heard saying “Get out of my way” as he leaves the court.
Facebook commenters decried the incident, with one woman writing, “You can’t see the ‘adult’ push the girl in this post but you can if you blow it up. Horrible person and so proud of the girl for holding her own!!! Wichita PD needs to take action on this guy. Not a good example.”
According to Kansas.com, Another woman on Facebook commented and said the referee was her niece.
“And sadly this kind of abuse on these teenage athletes who are reffing is becoming more frequent,” she wrote. “Absolutely ridiculous.”
Meanwhile, the police department offered the following written statement: “WPD will be reviewing the incident to determine if any department policies were violated. WPD officials do not have all the facts surrounding the incident at this time and cannot provide any further comment.”