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Baltimore to settle lawsuit with youth referee after attack

Baltimore city is expected to settle a lawsuit with a youth basketball referee who cried foul after he was assaulted by a coach and several spectators at a game at St. Frances Academy two years ago

The Baltimore City Board of Estimates is scheduled to approve a $30,000 payment at its Wednesday meeting to end litigation brought by Richard Hitchens, a referee for the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks youth basketball league.

Hitchens sustained injuries requiring surgery and other medical and dental care as a result of the incident, according to the memorandum prepared for the city spending panel. In his complaint, filed in Baltimore City Circuit Court in November 2015, Hitchens claimed his head was injured. The lawsuit does not name the alleged assailants nor explain what led to the attack.

The lawsuit alleged the city failed to provide adequate security for the event under a theory of premises liability.

The Baltimore City Law Department recommended the settlement “to resolve this litigation amicably and to avoid the expense, time, and uncertainties of further protracted litigation.”

The case is Richard Hitchens v. St. Frances Academy, 24C15005490.

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