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Boston fans will not be charged in Sheffield case

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Updated: May 5, 2005, 10:58 AM ET

Court won't charge Sox fans for run-in with SheffieldAssociated Press

BOSTON -- Two Boston Red Sox fans who scuffled with New York Yankees outfielder Gary Sheffield during a game last month won't be charged, one fan's attorney said Thursday.

A clerk magistrate ruled there was no probable cause to charge Christopher House and Matthew Donovan with disorderly conduct, House's lawyer, Matthew McCarthy, said as he left the closed hearing in Boston Municipal Court.

House and Donovan were ejected from Fenway Park on April 14 after House appeared to make contact with Sheffield as the player chased down a ball in the outfield.

Police later filed applications for criminal charges against House and Donovan, who apparently tossed a beer in Sheffield's direction during the scuffle.

Sheffield was chasing Jason Varitek's triple into the right-field corner when House reached over the 3-foot high fence, and Sheffield said he was hit in the face.

Sheffield picked up the ball, pushed House, then threw the ball to the infield. Sheffield turned toward House, but a security guard jumped over the wall and stood between the two.

House has denied making contact with Sheffield.

Red Sox officials revoked House's season tickets and banned Donovan from buying tickets this season.

"We've been cooperative with the Red Sox from the beginning," McCarthy said. "Hopefully at some point he'll get his tickets back."

House declined to comment after the hearing. As he headed into court he said: "I'm a private businessman. I intend to stay that way."

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