Parents of track star sucker-punched mid-race mull lawsuit, say cops vowed to arrest son if they pressed charges

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The family of a Florida teen who was allegedly sucker-punched in the head at a track meet is considering filing a civil lawsuit in connection with the assault.

Initial reports apparently suggested that neither the victim nor the other athlete wanted to press charges in the incident. However, there appears to be a dispute over what was actually said. The attorney for the victim now says that the victim’s family is “exploring civil remedies against those responsible.”

Cops allegedly had told the punched runner in the gone-viral incident that occurred at the Tohopekaliga Tiger Invitational in Kissimmee, Fla., that he would be arrested if he pressed charges against his purported adversary.

The confrontation at the high school event in the Orlando area allegedly originated when the victim, who was in running in first place in a 1,600-meter competition, allegedly told a non-participating athlete to get out of the way.

“Things escalated on the next lap when the other athlete further impeded the race, prompting a shove from the runner. The other athlete retaliated by chasing him down and delivering a sucker punch to the back of his head,” the New York Post claimed.

In front of stunned spectators, the race continued despite the track attack.


As alluded to above, the victim’s lawyer has called out the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office for the way it handled the matter.

“The family has read reports that the OCSD claims [my client] refused to press charges. This is false,” TMZ reported. “The family of the victim did want to press charges for this vicious attack and assault caught on video and witnessed by hundreds of people. The OCSD deputy told the family that if [my client] pressed charges then he would also be arrested for battery. Only because of this threat did the family choose not to press charges.”

The attorney noted that his client suffered a concussion and implied that he may also sue event officials for failing in various ways to stop the attack from occurring, which perhaps sounds like a claim for negligence. “If this event hired proper officials to help run this track meet, they could have prevented this,” attorney Nathan Carter asserted.

Both the Florida High School Athletic Association and administrators in the Orange County Public Schools are reportedly reviewing the situation to determine what kind of disciplinary action, if any, could or should be imposed.

“No public comments have been released from the other athlete’s family about the incident,” the Bleacher Report noted on Saturday.

It remains to be seen if any legal action will take place in this particular instance.

A civil case, which primarily involves the attempted recovery of money damages, requires a lower burden of proof, than that than required in a criminal proceeding. A civil plaintiff typically must prove legal liability in court by the preponderance of the evidence, which, in general, is sometimes analogized as tipping the scales even by just 51 percent to 49 percent.


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