By Brendan Tierney
JOELTON, Tennessee (WSMV) — A scary situation happened at a youth football game over the weekend.
The Metro Nashville Police Department said a parent threatened to shoot coaches and players over a hit, and the entire incident at the Joelton Community Club and Park was caught on camera.
Joelton parents said they were terrified when the parent from the visiting Greenbrier team tried to pull out a gun during a fight at a football game. They had to wrestle the weapon away from him and tackle him to the ground.
League officials said the Greenbrier parent was kicked out of the park earlier in the game for storming the field to yell at a referee. He returned with seconds left in the game involving 11 and 12-year-olds with a black bag that had a handgun inside.
“We have some bad apples, and bad apples can ruin a whole basket if you are not careful,” MTJFL president Terry Martin said. “We have to stand up to that, and we have to kick that out. Why do we need to do that, the number one reason is the safety of our families. Period.”
Martin said they were lucky no one was shot in the altercation. The Joelton team hid in their concession stand and waited for police to arrive.
Greenbrier team commissioner Rory Osborne said parents should be positive and never attack a referee or opposing team. Safety is his main priority, and he is now debating possibly canceling the rest of the team’s season.
“It breaks my heart. It really does,” Osborne said. “I’ve dealt with kids and youth sports for a long time, and my main priority is that it’s a good, safe place for the kids to be. It’s where they feel loved, appreciated, and when they go home, they know that is their safe place.”
After this incident, all MTJFL playoff games will have armed security this year. Martin wants to make that permanent for every game next season. He said every league can make its own safety rules, and Joelton has already implemented a clear bag policy going forward.
Police said detectives are working on this case to figure out if any charges will be filed against the parent who had the gun.
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