COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - An East Alabama baseball coach has been exonerated of simple battery charges stemming from a fight with opposing players at a game.
With nearly a dozen witnesses by his side, 25-year-old George Garland was accused of punching a player from Northside High School during a game last month.
A Russell County High School Junior varsity baseball coach, Garland maintained he was only trying to break up the fight at home plate between his catcher and an opposing batter.
The parents of a 15-year-old Northside athlete filed a police report against Garland, stating he punched their son in the face during a brawl between the players.
Garland pleaded not guilty just before a dozen witnessed collaborated with is his story, saying he did not not hit the juvenile.
Approximately 6 to 8 witnesses stood with the victim including his mother who testified she say Garland hit her son twice, but at the time didn't realize he was a coach. She said she immediately pointed Garland out to her husband as the man who punched her son in the face.
Attorney Stacey Jackson, represented Garland.
"My client was only trying to break up the fight and never hit the player, it was the catcher who hit him," Jackson said.
Jackson says his client is relieved that the charges were dropped.