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Youth football coach caught on camera punching player facing charges in Florida

Florida

Editor’s note: Video included in this article may be disturbing to some.

KISSIMMEE, Fla. (WESH)— A youth league football coach who was caught on camera repeatedly hitting one of his players during a game in Central Florida is now facing child abuse charges.

In the video, the coach is seen hitting the child’s helmet with enough force to knock the child off balance. Moments later, the coach hits the player again, knocking him to the ground.

The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office announced Friday that Gerrel Williams, of Savannah, Georgia, has now been charged with child abuse.

The sheriff’s office said charges had not been immediately filed because the parents of the parents involved did not wish to press charges.

The team was in Kissimmee competing in the 2020 American Youth Football National Championships AA Div 1-7U tournament when the incident happened Monday. The 7U division includes players age 7 and younger.

According to the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office, authorities were made aware of the incident by a viewer in Maryland who saw it play out online.

Per an incident report from the sheriff’s office, the coach has since been expelled from the league and not able to attend any games.

When reached by WESH 2 News sister station WJCL on Thursday, Williams declined to comment. But he did speak on the incident earlier this week in a Facebook Live video.

“I’m not going to make no excuses for what I did,” the coach said in the Facebook Live video following the incident. “I was wrong. …There is no excuse for my actions. He forgives me and his parents have forgiven me, so nobody else should be bashing me.”

The video of the incident has been viewed and shared millions of times on social media this week, even garnering the attention of Lebron James and Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee Shannon Sharpe.

“Even IF* that his kid, I’ll whip him,” Sharpe posted on Instagram. “I won’t let anyone prey on the weak or vulnerable in front of me. Not going to happen.”

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