No assault charge for coach

PAUL TURENNE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:37 PM ET

A Winnipeg minor hockey coach accused of punching a 12-year-old opposing player two weeks ago will not be charged.

Const. Natalie Aitken, a spokeswoman for Winnipeg police, said Friday that the police investigation into the allegations recently concluded, and will result in no charges.

"We believe there is insufficient evidence to substantiate any charges," Aitken said, adding that the alleged victim's family didn't want police to pursue any charges. "That is the appropriate action as per what the complainants wanted."

Aitken said police didn't conclude one way or the other that the punch did or did not happen, just that there is insufficient evidence to support any charges.

The punch allegedly occurred March 19 during the handshake procession at the end of a penalty-filled, chippy game between the River Heights and Maples 12A1 boys teams at the Spring Classic hockey tournament at Richmond Kings Community Centre in Fort Richmond.

One of the game's referees told the Sun last month that neither of the game's officials saw the alleged punch, even though they were monitoring the hand-shaking.

The player who was allegedly punched in the stomach complained to the referee shortly thereafter, and the player's parents contacted police.


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