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Father charged with assaulting coach after ballgame

Posted June 30, 2010

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— The father of a player on a Garner youth baseball team has been charged with assault in connection with an altercation that followed a ballgame in Wilson, police said.

Gary Wayne Merritt, 43, of 5905 Swales Way in Raleigh, also was charged with communicating threats and damage to personal property.

Witnesses told police that, after the game, Merritt began yelling and cursing at the coach of his son's team. Parents and bystanders tried to separate the two men, but a fight broke out, and police had to intervene.

Wilson police initially reported that Merritt was a coach and had attacked the coach of the opposing team.


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  • ECUPirateFan Jul 1, 2010

    Police report list Weapons as "hands, feet, teeth, etc." Teeth???

    btw, Merritt has a pending court case for DWI.

  • 2early4me Jun 30, 2010

    Garnerwolf1: Agreed, I'm sure it's not just Garner. It is a shame what sports in general has become. Not all but some adults/parents have taken these avenues away from the kids and used them for their own purposes. It's no wonder many kids would rather play with iPods/iTouches, cell phones, or video games, than gloves, bats or helmets. Sports used to be the vehicle to teach young people about life and help them develop good character traits that would make them productive members of our society. Now some view it as their vehicle to right any wrongs they had as children. Sad.....

  • JustAGuyInNC Jun 30, 2010

    What a piece of work.

  • slappyh99 Jun 30, 2010

    lifeisgood2; Thanks for the update on the NBC17 story. That is more in line with what I'm hearing.

  • Scare Crow Jun 30, 2010

    his poor kid, how can he face his team mates after something like this?

  • donnaferguson Jun 30, 2010

    Great example he is setting.

  • illegals--GO HOME Jun 30, 2010

    It is sad when a parent shows such "poor sportmanship" as to do something like this. What morals and good judgement could he possibly teach his child?? People have too much of a sense of "entitlement" these days and think the world owes them something. You have to earn your way in the world, both in order to earn respect and earn a living too!

  • lifeisgood2 Jun 30, 2010

    wmcmahon1: Exactly, this is an All-Star team and the only playing time guaranteed is one inning the field and one up to bat. A coach has to put the players in who he feels will be the best at that time and in All-Stars, if you are good enough to make the team, playing time is earned. Unfortunately, some parents think their kids are better than anyone else, when they should just let the coach make decisions and let their kids have fun while they learn the sport.

    slappyh99: Thank you, I thought you were thinking Mr. Merritt was coach, just wanted to make it clear he wasn't :)

  • slappyh99 Jun 30, 2010

    lifeisgood2; I DID NOT say Mr. Merritt was a coach. My comments were that the story was correct in that he WAS arrested. Another poster claimed that Mr. Merritt was not arrested. I confirmed through Wilson PD's website that he was arrested. I NEVER said he was a coach.

  • wmcmahon1 Jun 30, 2010

    It was about playing time for his son. The boy had played 2 innings and performed poorly and was replaced. The dad, the attacker, feels his son is as good as Derek Jeter.