A mother has filed a restraining order against a youth football coach after she claims her son was injured by him.
Tamara Hansel’s 10-year-old son began playing with the San Marcos Pop Warner Football League last month. She claims when the boys began misbehaving, Coach Greg Stephens singled her son out and caused assault injuries to her boy.
“When he got to our son he grabbed him by the front of his chest plate, dug his fingers into his neck and shook him front to back side to side very roughly,” Hansel said. “Which left my son with whiplash and a concussion. He's actually been out of sports now for three weeks.”
Hansel and her husband took their son to the hospital after he began vomiting, she said. Then they called the police and on Sept. 14 they filed a restraining order.
Hansel said her husband, Dan Hoffman, argued with the coach just days before the incident, saying that he was punishing his son too hard by making him run too many laps in the heat.
“He has specifically said I will punish your son for your actions he was speaking to my husband,” she said. “Then this happened the following Sunday.”
NBC 7 San Diego tried to reach Stephens, who is also the current president of the Pop Warner Football League, but he has not returned any phone calls.
Court documents show his response to the allegations, where he defends his coaching.
"I don't find either one of these activities to be punishing as football requires running, strength and mental awareness,” court documents state. “I am not a coach who strives on punishment.”
Hansel says her son has since been switched to another football team within Pop Warner and that they still come in contact with Stephens. She said Stephens has to remain at least 25 feet away from her and her son.
There are no criminal charges pending at this time.