NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

January 30, 2014

Salisbury resident with cerebral palsy mocked by Boston Barstool Sports

Salisbury resident Sean Mitchell believed he must have done something wrong when he heard his mother, Sue, explode over speakerphone on his way home from the Bruins game Tuesday night.

Sean, a 20-year-old who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at birth, attended the game with his father, Bob. The Salisbury residents used a pair of season tickets to sit behind the Bruins bench, and Sean was captured by NESN cameras eating a hot dog without a bun during the first period.

“Sean has problems with muscular control,” Sue Mitchell said. “He loves to eat hot dogs and have refreshments. He can’t eat a hot dog in a bun. It’s easier for him to take a hot dog out and eat it that way.”

Sue Mitchell was enraged when a screenshot of the NESN telecast was published on the satirical sports website, Boston Barstool Sports, with a headline that called Sean “a savage” for eating the hot dog without a bun.

“There was some sexual innuendo,” Sue Mitchell said. “I’m disgusted by this. He’s special needs trying to eat. His outlet is going to Bruins and Patriots games, and now he’s not going to want to eat a hot dog again in public. I want to get this out showing what Boston Barstool Sports did.”

The Barstool blog post was published at 9:51 p.m., and was removed from the site about an hour later. Boston Barstool Sports owner and founder David Portnoy said yesterday there was no intent to pick on someone who has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy.

“A bunch of people sent the photo, and I actually thought it was a funny picture,” Portnoy said. “A lot of people did. It was a two-second post, and we took it down maybe an hour later. It had nothing to do with the kid. We thought it’s a normal kid who chooses to eat a hot dog without a bun.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints

NDN Video
Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft NHL playoff preview: Boston Bruins vs. Detroit Red Wings NHL playoff preview: Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Montreal Canadiens NHL playoff preview: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Columbus Blue Jackets Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday NFL Draft 2014 Team Needs - Carolina Panthers NFL Draft 2014 Team Needs - Atlanta Falcons Too Hot or Too Cold: Brewers and Rangers NFL Draft 2014 Team Needs - Baltimore Ravens NFL Draft 2014 Team Needs - Arizona Cardinals NFL Draft 2014 Team Needs – Oakland Raiders NFL Draft 2014 Team Needs – Houston Texans NFL Draft 2014 Team Needs – Jacksonville Jaguars Olympic Great Michael Phelps Ending Retirement Draft Preview: Chris Davis Draft Preview: Jay Prosch Watson: 'I'm always going to cry' Is the use of pine tar considered cheating? Draft Preview: Jake Matthews Draft Preview: L'Damian Washington
Special Features