Protester Arrested for Not Playing Nice in Raleigh Ballfield Fracas

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A heated battle over a plan to build a baseball field for disabled children has resulted in criminal charges being filed against one man involved in the dispute. Police filed assault charges against a 48-year-old man who allegedly attacked a woman who was telling protestors to get off of school property. The incident occurred in Cary, where the Miracle League of the Triangle, the league that organizes the special-needs games, now plays. The proposed field would be located in north Raleigh in the Wakefield development off Queensland Road.

Neighborhood residents opposed to the proposed baseball field congregated at the Adams Elementary School in late May, intending to pass out literature critical of the proposal. Police summoned to the scene told the protestors that they should remove themselves from the school grounds and stay on the public sidewalk.

The executive director of the Miracle League was repeating those instructions to a pair of protestors when the man attacked her from behind, according to police. They say he struck her in the neck and shoulder with his fists, resulting in her falling to the ground. The arrested man is a resident of Raleigh.

Critics of the proposed field cite concerns over the level of traffic and noise, as well as safety or health concerns stemming from the proximity of certain power transmission lines to the proposed site. Residents also said that big lights planned for the field would be intrusive for the few homes located in the immediate vicinity.

More than 500 special-needs children with a variety of disabilities currently participate in the Miracle League’s games.

Source: WRAL, “Fight escalates over Raleigh ballfield for special-needs children,” Cullen Browder, June 4, 2012