A Huntington man who manages a youth baseball team was arrested Friday on charges of reportedly harassing a Commack man coaching another team.
Suffolk County police said Robert Sanfilippo, 45, of 20 Timber Ridge Dr., stalked a rival coach’s family and sent threatening text messages to the competing coach.
Commack resident John Reardon told Newsday that he was the recipient of the text messages, which he said included photos of his son getting on the school bus and one which stated: "Maybe I'll pick him up at the bus stop for you next week."
Police gave this account: Sanfilippo, who manages the team Vengeance – a youth baseball squad of 10 and 11 year old boys – got into an altercation with another coach at a tournament in May. He later bought an untraceable phone and in August, sent several text messages with pictures, threatening to harm the victim, his son, and his wife.
"My wife was very scared," Reardon told Newsday. "She was always locking the door behind her."
Fourth Precinct Crime Section officers determined the phone belonged to Sanfilippo. He was arrested Friday during a game at Baseball Heaven, at 350 County Road 101, in Yaphank, at 5:15 p.m.
According to Newsday, the incident that caused the divide occurred at a baseball tournament when Sanfilippo accused Reardon of cheering too loudly, and the two continued to exchange words. The day before another tournament later in the summer, Reardon started receiving a threatening text message.
Sanfilippo was arraigned on Saturday and reportedly charged with 19 counts of aggravated harassment and one count of stalking.