Dodgeball game leads to criminal charges

Dodgeball is the sort of sport that can leave the typical scars that high school has a way of leaving.

In Wisconsin it can also lead to a criminal record.

The Pioneer Press reports that Jacob Sigler, 18, of Maiden Rock, Wisc., has been charged with battery after the victim and his parents reported he was slugged in the face by Sigler during the October game at Ellsworth High School.

The account of the incident might even sound familiar to anybody who played dodgeball and ran out of weaponry.

Sigler retrieved a couple of balls and threw them at the victim, the boy said, but “when Jacob ran out of balls, Jacob closed his fist and punched (the victim) in the face.” He said he was knocked to the ground by the punch. One of the other boys confronted Sigler after the punch, the victim said.

The two students hadn’t been at odds in the past, the victim said, and they didn’t exchange words with each other when they went to the principal’s office afterward.

Police interviewed Sigler after talking with the victim and his mother. He said the preceding dodgeball volleys were “a friendly fight, just a competitive game of dodgeball.” He said he was struck from about 2 or 3 feet away in the face when he wasn’t looking by a ball thrown by the victim, which he thought was excessive.

From there, the ball-tossing got “really heated,” the complaint states, as the two students closed in on each other. Sigler said he thought the other boy was about to tackle him.

“Then, I punched him,” Sigler told police.

The victim suffered a facial fracture.

Sigler’s first court appearance in Feb. 3.

  • The first rule of dodgeball is to not talk about dodgeball.

    /Actually, a hard throw at the face isn’t really cool, man.

    • Actually, what are HS age kids doing playing dodgeball in the first place?

      • Ennio S.

        Agreed. We played dodge ball in elementary school (mid 80’s). Head shots were illegal and an immediate out.

        • Al

          Yup. Even whipping the ball was a no-go, regardless of where it was aimed.

      • joetron2030

        Assuming there is no over-arching district policy about it, I think it largely comes down to the Phys Ed teacher as to whether it’s played or not.

        My middle schooler was hit in the face during a dodge ball game during gym class recently that ended up breaking her glasses.

        My wife was very angry that they were even playing that in the first place.

        • Mine was more of a rhetorical question.

          So far as getting hit in the head playing dodgeball…it will happen, on accident…but those who TARGET the head should probably be punished in some way…

  • Will

    I was punched in the face in middle school for no reason and I was threatened with punishment too because the kid that did it said I somehow hit him with my glove (which I did not). He lied and I had a black eye, the administrator said we can drop the issue or both of us would have to be punished…I lost my faith in government and bureaucracy that day.

    • jon

      I think an entire news cut comments section could be filled with ridiculous acts of school officials that just didn’t make any sense. And maybe a few that did actually make a lot of sense, that probably got some administrator in trouble.

      I suspect these various failures for schools to be able to administer discipline is why they started out sourcing this to the criminal justice system…

  • Rob

    I think we need more school activities that involve kids throwing objects at each other. Or maybe something with slingshots…

    • Thomas Mercier

      Atlatls are all the rage these days.

  • Zachary

    we always played with a central “neutral zone” about 10′ wide, so there was never an issue of getting off those devastating point-blank shots. That and head shots were outs.