Father faces charges in attack on teen football coach

Posted: Updated:

A father is facing charges after police say he attacked a teenage peewee flag football coach.

Westwood police say that Peter Iappelli became so angered about what was happening during Saturday’s game that he put 16-year old coach Phillip Bicocchi in a chokehold.

"It started as a bear hug. I guess at some point they had an argument and the father grabbed him and the bear hug transitioned into a chokehold,” says Westwood Police Detective Warren Morrell.

The scuffle was broken up and Iappelli was kicked off the field by other parents. He surrendered to police Tuesday and was charged with assault and disorderly conduct.

The commissioner of North Jersey NFL Flag Football says Iappelli and his son, who was playing at the time, will be banned from further flag football events.

Iappelli is the business administrator for the Closter School District. He has a court hearing on Oct. 20.

Commissioner Fred Kritzer says that there will be a meeting with parents Friday to remind them to model good behavior in front of their children.

"Please instill good sportsmanship, [be] a good person, [respect] other people and never cross the line for anything. It's not that important,” Kritzer says.

Witnesses say that Bicocchi was shaken up but appeared to be OK. Kritzer says that the teen is expected to be back coaching on Saturday.

News 12 New Jersey reached out to the attorney representing Iappelli for comment, but did not hear back.

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