COVINGTON -- A man is in custody after he allegedly picked a 7-year-old child up by his ankle and dropped him on his head during football practice, according to the Covington Police Department.
Stephen Pierce, 31 of 25 Oak Meadows Place, was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and transported to the Newton County Detention Center Thursday following the incident which occurred around 8 p.m.
An employee with the Newton County Recreation Department notified the CPD after several parents and children reported the incident to him.
Pierce is not a coach, nor is he a parent of a child playing on the team that was involved in the incident.
By the time officers arrived at the practice field at the Turner Lake Complex, the 7-year-old's mother and brother were there with him. The child told the officers that he was wearing his football uniform, including helmet, when the man picked him up, dropped him and then kicked him in the head. His older brother said he saw the man pick his brother up about 2 feet off the ground, drop him and then kick the back of his helmet.
Officers next turned their attention to Pierce, who initially denied any contact with the child, but eventually admitted he did pick up the child by the ankle and set him down, but said he did not drop him. He said the reason he did it was because the child was acting inappropriately, calling people names and making obscene gestures.
"Pierce stated he told the coaches and they did not do anything," the CPD incident report states. "Pierce stated he grabbed the child because he was acting out of control."
Pierce told officers that his own child was practicing on another part of the field at the time and the incident did not involve him.