A man from Surrey was arrested after allegedly punching a North Vancouver woman at a youth soccer game in West Vancouver over the weekend.
According to Const. Jeff Palmer of the West Vancouver Police, the incident occurred just before 6 pm on Saturday, March, 16, officers were called the artificial soccer fields near Ambleside where the U21 West Vancouver Football Club was playing a game against the BC Tigers from Surrey.
Upon arrival, police discovered a large crowd of parents blocking a vehicle from leaving the parking lot. The person in the vehicle was a man who reportedly punched a woman during the game. Palmer says that the alleged victim and suspect were parents of players on opposing teams.
The dispute had initially occurred during the game when the ball went out of bounds and a parent held the ball. A player from the opposite team accused the parent of trying to delay the game.
“The player got into a pretty loud verbal conflict with the parent,” said Palmer. Eventually, the disagreement escalated into a larger verbal dispute involving more parents.
The accused is said to have ended up striking a 45-year-old North Vancouver woman in the jaw.
Officers took statements and a 42-year-old Surrey man was arrested for the incident and released upon a promise to appear in North Vancouver court in April.
Palmer said that it isn’t entirely clear whether the woman who was hit was the intended target or “if the man was swinging for someone else and she stepped into the path of the punch.”