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Violence erupts at game

Mom is beaten, left unconscious at son’s tourney

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Friday was supposed to be a happy day for Cindy Morrison.

Her 15-year-old son had just scored the winning run for West Side in a hard-fought, come-from-behind win over Taylorsville for the state Babe Ruth championship.

But as her boy's team celebrated their improbable win, Morrison's postgame euphoria turned to terror when she says she was assaulted by two parents from the opposing team, one wielding an umbrella, the other a folded-up stroller.

The two women poked Morrison with the umbrella, hit her with the stroller and one of the women punched her in the face, according to a Salt Lake City police report.

"It was everything I could do to defend myself," Morrison said.

Stories of overzealous parents becoming violent over youth sports have dotted the national news with increasing regularity. But Friday's melee, which ended with police arresting one woman for investigation of aggravated assault and the searching for a second woman, was a shock to Morrison and several others at the game.

"That was the first time I'd ever seen everything erupt," said Dub Slade, who retired last year after serving as the West Side Babe Ruth president for the previous five years. "There was just mayhem going on around here."

According to Morrison, emotions were high on both sides as the two teams battled for a chance to play in the national Babe Ruth Tournament in Anaheim, Calif.

Two close calls that went against Taylorsville seemed to infuriate their fans and coach, Morrison said.

Morrison's husband asked the Taylorsville coach to control his parents, according to a police report. The coach responded by swearing at him, the report stated.

Morrison felt the situation was spinning out of control and decided to call her friend, who lived nearby and works as a Salt Lake police officer.

Two women who'd been cheering for Taylorsville noticed Morrison on her cell phone and confronted her, according to a police report.

The two women began beating and punching Morrison with their umbrella and stroller, the report states.

Morrison was unconscious when police arrived and was taken to LDS Hospital with scratches on her shoulder and back, bruises on her arms and puffiness around both eyes. By Monday Morrison still had a scratch under her right eye and was suffering from dizziness and headaches.

"How I was pinpointed, I have no idea," Morrison said. "I really think that if it wouldn't have been me, it would have been somebody else . . . because they were angry."

Police booked one of the women, 33, into the Salt Lake County Jail Friday night for investigation of aggravated assault. The woman posted bail and was released Sunday. Salt Lake police are expected to screen charges against the woman with the District Attorney's Office later this week, Sgt. Fred Louis said.

The woman told police she did not start the fight, according to a police report.

Meanwhile, authorities are still looking for the other woman who allegedly assaulted Morrison.

"It's just awful," said Morrison's husband, Kent Morrison. "It makes me sick to my stomach."


E-MAIL: djensen@desnews.com