Mississauga hockey brawl involving 2 youth teams caught on camera now under police investigation
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Peel Regional Police say investigators are now probing a violent hockey fight between two youth hockey teams and some coaching staff members in Mississauga after the altercation was caught on camera and posted on social media.
In a video shared by Julie Koostachin, an unidentified team wearing blue and white jerseys appears to be celebrating at one end of an ice rink. It’s not clear what teams were involved in the fight.
A lone player wearing a blue jersey appears to be skating toward the team when two players in white and red jerseys can be seen charging toward the player. One of them pushes the player in the blue and white jersey, causing them both to fall to the ice.
Two referees can be seen skating to the fighting players before more players in white and red jerseys go over. The rest of the players in blue and white jerseys can be seen skating over where the fight was occurring, and seconds later the brawl breaks out.
“OMFG!! Those little f—ers attacking my baby,” Koostachin wrote in her post early Thursday.
“He just wanted to celebrate with the rest of his team mates (sic) after winning this championship game.”
Videos of the incident were also shared on other Facebook and Instagram accounts, racking up tens of thousands of views.
WATCH: Hockey brawl breaks out at youth hockey tournament. Sean O’Shea reports.
In a video posted on the Hockey Players Club Instagram account, people in plain clothes can be seen coming on the ice. One of the people, who was later confirmed by the league to be a member of the coaching staff, can be seen swinging at, and hitting, players on the ice before he is pushed down.
When asked about the incident Thursday afternoon, police initially told Global News officers were called to Iceland Arena, located on Matheson Boulevard East at Highway 403, at around 8 p.m. for a hockey fight. A spokesperson said the fight escalated when coaches tried to break up a fight between the young players.
At the time, police said there wasn’t an investigation since no one was hurt, adding charges weren’t laid. The spokesperson added they are unaware if parents were involved in the fight. However, police said they were aware of several videos and that an investigation is underway, noting charges could be laid in the future.
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The Little Native Hockey League was hosting its 48th annual March Break tournament at the arena at the time of the fight. The tournament sees 227 teams from First Nations communities across Ontario and approximately 3,500 youth in total participate.
League president Marian Jacko told Global News she wasn’t at the arena at the time of the brawl. She said officials are treating the situation “very seriously” and met Wednesday night and again on Thursday to discuss potential disciplinary action.
Jacko said although they have a direction of where they want to go and policies they want to put in place, final decisions haven’t been made.
“The LNHL has four pillars, and the four pillars of the LNHL are sportsmanship, education, citizenship and respect,” she said.
“These are the things the LNHL promotes. These are two teams that were involved in that very unfortunate and regrettable situation and for 225 other teams, it has been a very positive experience.”
Jacko said the league has zero tolerance for fighting “and we have enforced that rule throughout this tournament and in past as well.”
“I’m not trying to minimize the situation, but I also want to highlight this has not been a negative experience for the majority of the attendees to the LNHL. It has in fact been a positive experience,” she said.
Mayor Bonnie Crombie said on Twitter that the incident is not “representative” of Mississauga, minor hockey, the LNHL and its players and coaches.
“It’s important to remember it’s just a game. Children and athletes must feel safe when participating in sports,” she wrote.
— With files from Samantha Berdini
© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.