DOCUMENT: Sports, Crime

NCIS Catches Young Baseball Star Stealing

Midshipmen gear theft probe targets Maryland teen

United States Naval Academy

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Navy Baseball Theft

NOVEMBER 11--A star high school athlete is the chief suspect in a recent burglary at the United States Naval Academy that netted the thief gloves, bats, and spikes used by midshipmen, equipment that began appearing for sale on eBay shortly after it was stolen.

In search warrants unsealed this week, Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents identified Abe Batal, 18, as the individual auctioning off items taken during a mid-September burglary at Bishop Baseball Stadium on the Naval Academy grounds in Annapolis, Maryland. A recent NCIS raid at the home of Batal, who has not been arrested, recovered equipment stolen from the Navy baseball team.

In addition to a wide assortment of sports equipment, the burglar (or burglars) also raided the stadium’s locker room and head coach’s office and pinched tennis shoes, sunglasses, iPods, headphones, a radar gun, a projector, and a projector screen.

Soon after the burglary, victims discovered that some of their property was being auctioned off on eBay. In short order, NCIS agents determined that Batal, pictured above, was using the screen name “qualityathleticgear” to offer the hot goods.

As part of an undercover operation, investigators purchased items from Batal, including a Rawlings Pro Preferred glove used by Josh Moore, a 20-year-old infielder on the Naval team. Moore’s glove contained distinctive markings, including his uniform number (“5”) and a reference to a Bible verse (“Phil 4:13”) on “the inside of the pinky part of the glove.”

During a search last month at Batal’s Dunkirk, Maryland home, NCIS agents recovered a wide array of baseball equipment, according to an inventory prepared by probers. Included in the material seized were items stolen during the stadium burglary. Batal did not respond to a message left on his home answering machine, or one sent to his Facebook page.

Batal, a senior at Riverdale Baptist, has starred on the high school’s baseball squad, and last season was named his conference’s co-MVP. He has excelled at several positions (catcher, pitcher, outfielder) and was selected for a Maryland state all-star team that competed at a June tournament in Oklahoma. (9 pages)

Comments (5)

Just want to say he is not a Riverdale student, he is a home schooler.
Where does it say this kid is a Democrat?
Did Mark Harmon and the hot fake Israeli broad show up to make the arrest?
It would take a Democrat to steal private and public property off the hallowed grounds of the Naval Academy. The midshipman should be allowed to beat this Socialist and throw him somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic ocean.
sounds more like the watergate guys ?