BROOKSVILLE — The director of parks and recreation for the city of Brooksville was arrested early Saturday and charged with domestic violence.
Michael C. Walker, 43, who has worked for the city since 2004 after a career as a professional baseball player, was charged with domestic battery and tampering or harassment of a victim or witness. He remained in custody at the Hernando County Jail at midday Saturday in lieu of $2,500 bail.
Walker — who is also director of the Hernando Youth League, a baseball organization for children and teens — is accused of grabbing his wife by the neck during an argument at the bedroom of their home on Tankersley Road in Brooksville Friday night and smashing a phone she used to try to call 911, a report states. Authorities said the bedroom was in disarray, with clothes strewn about and a jewelry box dumped and broken.
Walker admitted to overturning the jewelry box but denied ever touching his wife or smashing her phone. He was arrested at 12:31 a.m. and taken to the Hernando County jail.
Walker graduated from Hernando High School and went on to play minor and major league baseball for 14 seasons. He pitched for five seasons in the majors for the Cleveland Indians, Chicago Cubs and Detroit Tigers before retiring in the late 1990s and returning to Brooksville. He was hired as director of parks and recreation for the city in March 2004.
City Manager Jennene Norman-Vacha said Saturday morning that she was aware of Walker's arrest. She said he would be placed on administrative leave with pay while the city conducts an investigation surrounding the arrest.