Santa Anita racetrack loses two horses in three days, marking 25 fatalities in six months

KABC-TV(LOS ANGELES) -- Two horses died at Southern California's prominent Santa Anita racetrack over the weekend, marking 25 thoroughbred fatalities there in the last six months.

A pair of 3-year-old geldings sustained fatal injuries in separate incidents on Friday and Sunday as the embattled racetrack works and employ reforms to stem a rash of unprecedented horse deaths.

One of the horses, a male called Spectacular Music, sustained a rare injury to the pelvis while racing near the half-mile pole on Sunday, according to the track.

"The horse did not fall, but was pulled up at about the half mile pole at the discretion of Jockey Jorge Velez and vanned to receive a comprehensive evaluation by on-site world-class veterinarians," Santa Anita said in a statement Monday.

"Equine pelvic injuries are rare," it added, "and further evaluation is being conducted by the California Horse Racing Board, per protocol, to understand what could have caused this uncommon injury."

The other gelding, Commander Coil, died after sustaining a shoulder injury in a training session on Friday morning, the racetrack revealed Saturday.

"Equine shoulder injuries are rare, especially for a horse that is galloping as opposed to breezing or racing," a spokesperson for Santa Anita said in a statement to ABC News. "A comprehensive evaluation will be completed to understand what might have caused this uncommon injury."

Santa Anita Park, owned by the Canadian-based Stronach Group, postponed several races earlier this year and hired respected trackman Dennis Moore to help assess the condition on its main track.

Some experts attributed the cluster of thoroughbred deaths to inclement weather. Southern California had an unusual amount of rain this past season after many years of drought or near drought, which would have impacted the quality of the track the horses can run on safely.

"Every time it rains you seal the tracks as hard as it can get. So the water runs off of it," Clifford Sise, a veteran horse trainer currently working with 15 horses at Santa Anita and other tracks, told ABC News Saturday. "It would stop raining only three days, where you can really work on it. You need at least seven, eight days to dry out. To go to the bottom of it and the cushion and work on it. It was nobody’s fault."

At least 25 horses have died while racing or training since the track opened for the winter season on Dec. 26. The horse deaths prompted several investigations earlier this year, including a task force convened by the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office and the California Horse Racing Board.

The most-recent deaths were the first ones reported since track officials introduced a new reforms last month, track officials said.

"Before this catastrophic injury, unprecedented health and safety reforms were introduced at Santa Anita Park. From April 1 to May 18, there have been 698 starters on the main track and 651 starters on the turf course without fatalities," Santa Anita said in its statement Monday.

"The Stronach Group is committed to advocating for the health and safety of horses and riders and will continue to work with stakeholders in California and nationally to drive further progress,” it added.

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Parents brawl during youth baseball game after disagreeing with 13-year-old umpire

Parents brawl during youth baseball game after disagreeing with 13-year-old umpirefstop123/iStock(LAKEWOOD, Colo.) -- A baseball game between a group of 7-year-old kids degenerated into an all-out brawl with parents throwing haymakers, other cowering for cover and a woman even jumping on someone's back.

The reason for the brawl: a parent didn't like the calls being made by a 13-year-old umpire.

The fight began at Westgate Elementary School in Lakewood, Colo., a suburb southwest of Denver, on Saturday at about noon as 15 to 20 adults got into a violent tussle, according to Lakewood police.

The brawl was still ongoing as Lakewood police arrived at the scene.

These adults took over the field and began assaulting each other on 6/15 during a youth baseball game. We're looking for any info, in particular to ID the man in the white shirt/teal shorts. Several people have already been cited in this fight and injuries were reported. pic.twitter.com/ieenhwCrbU

— Lakewood Police (@LakewoodPDCO) June 18, 2019

Police issued four citations for disorderly conduct, but said they are still searching for others involved in the fight.

Police are looking for an adult in a white T-shirt and teal shorts in particular because he can be seen in the video throwing sucker punches at people looking in the other direction. Police said it is unknown if this person is a parent of one of the children in the game.

There were a few minor injuries and one person suffered serious bodily injury, police told ABC News. No details on the injury were available.

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