Attorney enters not guilty plea for man accused of attacking Roseville referee

Local News

ROSEVILLE, Calif. (KTXL) – Initial court proceedings began for the Roseville father accused of pushing an official to the ground during the middle of a soccer game.

Facing charges of misdemeanor battery against a sports official, 34-year-old Vicente Robles was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday for his arraignment, but he did not appear. Instead, his attorney pleaded not guilty on his behalf.

“Besides a sprained thumb, I’m fine,” said soccer referee Andrew Reali.

Reali said it could have been much worse for him when, earlier this fall, he said a parent attacked him on the field.

Reali told FOX40 the incident took place on Oct. 30 at Festerson Park in Roseville. He said he was in the middle of officiating a game on the field when the parent, apparently unhappy with a call made on the field, all of the sudden rushed at him and blindsided him.

“He came out of nowhere,” Reali recalled. “I didn’t even he was coming. I had no time to react. Nothing.”

Prosecutors later identified the suspected attacker as Robles, a resident of Sacramento.

In the meantime, Reali said he’s haunted by what he says happened.

“I get parents, coaches, players yell, cuss, scream, you name it, at us all the time, we get it all the time, but this kind of a thing, no, this has never happened to me before,” Reali said.

Fellow referees joined him in front of the courthouse to express their support for Reali following the incident.

“I was horrified, and that shocked … shocked me very much,” said Moe Shafai, the director for Referees for Norcal Premier Soccer Northern California.

Referees who spoke to FOX40 said there is no justification for what Robles is accused of doing.

“Whatever your excuse is, it’s an excuse. There’s just no justification for what happened out there,” said State Youth Referee Administrator for CalNorth Steve Larsen

“I definitely hope justice is served to the max,” Reali said. “I hope this guy gets the max because I don’t want this to happen to anyone younger or even older than me. I want this to be a lesson for everyone.”

Robles will be in court Jan. 25. If convicted, he could face a fine and up to one year in jail.

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