Attacked ref’s attorney blasts John Jay players for ‘heinous crime’

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The attorney for Robert Watts — the referee who was targeted and hit by two players in a high school football game in Marble Falls, Texas, last week — has spoken publicly for the first time.

On “Today,” Alan Goldberger blasted John Jay High School for a “heinous crime.”

“This wasn’t passion turning to violence, this was premeditated crime,” Goldberger said. “Two crimes committed in a period of just a few seconds. Very, very ugly. Civilized people don’t do that — they just don’t do it.”

Goldberger also denied allegations that Watts used racial slurs prior to being hit by the players. “He didn’t make any racially charged or inappropriate comments to these or any other student athletes on the night of the game,” Goldberger said.

In a press conference Tuesday, the school district also announced an assistant coach has been placed on paid leave while an investigation looks into allegations that he encouraged the players to retaliate on the referee for missed calls.

The two players who hit the referee have been suspended while the investigation runs its course, and the district is proceeding with this case as an assault on a school official.

We still eagerly await the first comment from head coach Gary Gutierrez. All questioning has to begin with what he or any other coach on his staff knew or did in this situation.

Here’s the video of Goldberger’s interview with “Today.”

Teddy Mitrosilis works in social content development at FOX Sports Digital. Follow him on Twitter @TMitrosilis and email him at

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