The mother of the Linden High School football player caught on video hitting another player with his own helmet says it was an accident.

"He said his hand got stuck in the helmet and I believe my child," Anita McDuffy  told ABC 7 of the incident that took place on Sept. 11 in the Tigers season opener against Immaculata High School. "I'm not saying he's right for what happened, I'm not saying he's wrong. I'm going to stand by my son," who she said is "apologetic" for what happened. The Immaculata player required 10 stitches to close the wound that resulted in the hit.

Anita McDuffy
Anita McDuffy, mother of the Linden High School football player who struck an opposing player with his own helmet (CBS New York))

Friitz Monicon has been suspended from school and the football team.  In a statement posted on the district's website, Linden School Superintendent Danny Robertozzi said Moncion's action on the field is contrary to the type of sportsmanship Linden requires from its student athletes and the school board "is pursuing the severest disciplinary measures permitted under law."

McDuffy said her son is hurt by the comments made on video. “He’s very hurt. He’s crying,” McDuffy told CBS New York. “He’s really upset.”

Salaam Ismial, director of the Elizabeth-based United Youth Council, defended Moncion as "coming from decent stock" who has never had any problems at school.

Another Moncion supporter, community activist Dondi Givens Jr.,  said that racial comments were made during the game and that the Immaculta player that Moncion struck had speared him in the stomach earlier in the game.

“This is the first time I’m hearing anything about this incident being possibly racially motivated, and that has not come up in our investigation. It has not come up in our conversation with the young man,” Robertozzi told CBS New York.

Linden Police said it is up to the Union County Prosecutor's Office to determine if any charges will be filed against Monicion. "We just provided them with the evidence and everything we have from the investigation, and it’s totally their determination what they want to do with this,” said Linden Police Capt. James Sarnicki. 

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