HASTINGS, Minn. - Dakota County prosecutors have charged a St. Paul man with making terroristic threats and assault after an attack on a coach of his son's youth hockey team.
A criminal complaint says 49-year-old Thomas Tonda attacked the coach after he disciplined Tonda's son following an incident during practice.
The victim told police he intervened in an altercation involving 3 players, one of whom was Tonda's son. The coach says Tonda's son swung his stick at one of the other players like a baseball bat, hitting him.
The coach says he told the defendant's son that his behavior was unacceptable, after which the boy skated off the ice and into the locker room.
Witnesses say Tonda began yelling at the assistant coach, telling him to come over. After he did, Tonga allegedly attacked the coach and put him in a choke hold. Another coach was eventually able to pull the defendant off.
As he left the area, witnesses say Tonda threatened to kill the assistant coach and "choke him out."
In a written statement, Dakota County Attorney Jim Backstrom said "Attacks of this nature upon youth athletic coaches are shocking and extremely disturbing."
If found guilty, Thomas Tonda faces a possible five years in prison, and a $10,000 fine.
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