A Navy chief who charged into a youth soccer game and beat up a 14-year-old boy made a scheduled court appearance Thursday, where he pleaded no contest and was found guilty of assault and battery, the Virginia Beach Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office told Navy Times.
Chief Engineman Jordan Lee Grinnell, 38, was sentenced at the Virginia Beach Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court hearing to 12 months in jail, with the entire sentence suspended except for 60 days. He will be allowed to serve out the 60 days in jail over the course of 30 consecutive weekends, starting Oct. 19.
Additionally, Grinnell’s probation period includes a requirement of two years good behavior and is barred from any contact with the victim or his family, the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office said.
The chief assigned to Navy Recruiting District Richmond was arrested by Virginia Beach Police in June after charging into his son’s sand soccer match, knocking down a 14-year-old boy and pummeling the unsuspecting teenager’s face with his fists as the teenager and his son jostled for the ball.
The youngster was hospitalized with a concussion and required four stitches.
“I still can’t get it out of my mind,” Jennifer Moss, the mother of another player who witnessed the beating, told the Virginian-Pilot in June. “I didn’t sleep for two days and I’m still having trouble sleeping. The kids who witnessed it are all shaken."
Toward the end of the game, the boys started shoving each other as they fought for possession, witnesses said. It was then that Grinnell, a 17-year Navy veteran from Colorado, stormed the scene to join the fracas.
“I’m thinking he’s coming over to break the boys up,” Moss said, only to see “him strike him at least twice.”
The victim’s coach finally got the incensed father off the boy by tackling Grinnell.
The victim’s mother confronted the irate chief after he’d been pulled off her son.
“I asked him did he feel better now,” she told the Pilot. “’Does that make you feel like a big man?’ He said, ‘No it doesn’t, I’m sorry.’”
Grinnell was given bond by the magistrate following his arrest.
Multiple attempts were made by Navy Times to inquire what punishment, if any, Grinnell received from the Navy but officials would not specify exactly what ramifications he is facing.
“The Navy is following our administrative protocols regarding civilian convictions,” Lt. Cmdr. Jessica McNulty, spokesperson for Navy Recruiting Command, told Navy Times.
Jon Simkins is a writer and editor for Military Times, and a USMC veteran.