To the editor:
As most Bristolians are aware, two former residents, brothers Jesse and Richard Perry, have been arrested on multiple counts of 1st and 2nd degree child molestation. Since their arrests, there has been much coverage in the media, both in print and on television. Most if not all of this coverage has emphasized both brothers were employed by school systems and volunteered as Little League and Pop Warner coaches.
In the wake of recent incidents on the local and national level, it is understandable that residents and especially parents are concerned and interested in these arrests. The news coverage associating the accused with our children’s schools and youth sporting organizations is no doubt especially troublesome to parents. Unfortunately many accounts have painted a cloudy picture, leaving the reader or viewer wondering when they were coaches and if their children could have come in contact with the accused.
As president of King Philip Little League and on behalf of the board of directors, we feel it is important to clarify the statements linking the accused Perry brothers with King Philip Little League. While both brothers may have been involved in Little League in coaching and umpiring capacities in the past, we feel it important that parents and Bristolians be assured that neither accused has had any affiliation what so ever with King Philip Little League since the 2000 season, when I and the longest standing board member of KPLL started coaching.
Little League International, along with the Town of Bristol, both require background checks of national criminal and sexual offender databases be performed on all Little League volunteers. Only after passing these background checks are volunteers’ names brought forward for consideration for managing, coaching, or volunteer positions. Their selections are then weighed by the board based on their baseball knowledge, integrity, and good standing within the league.
Little League Baseball is about introducing and teaching baseball, emphasizing good sportsmanship, learning the importance of teamwork, having fun, and building lasting and happy memories. It is the mission of the KPLL Board and the whole KPLL family to provide our children those opportunities and to do so in a safe environment, and we want to assure you we take that responsibility very seriously.
President, KPLL 2013