Thistledown bans trainer Exposito after allegedly pulling gun on jockey
Trainer Adolfo J. Exposito is facing criminal charges in North Randall, Ohio, after allegedly assaulting and threatening jockey Hector L. Rosario Jr. with a gun in the parking lot of Thistledown racetrack on July 27.
Exposito, a veteran conditioner with 258 career victories from 1,636 starts, has been charged with assault and aggravated menacing, according to Steve Zaper, interim chief investigator for the Ohio State Racing Commission.
Stewards have suspended Exposito's license for one year and fined him $1,000, the maximum penalty under Ohio rules. Exposito has appealed the penalty and received an automatic stay of his license suspension.
However, Thistledown management exercised its private property rights, revoked the six stalls Exposito had at the track, and evicted him from the premises.
“Management has told Mr. Exposito they don't want to do any business with him any more,” Zaper said. “We don't have any control over that. The appeal will be handled under Section 119 of the Ohio revised code.”
Zaper is the former director of security at Thistledown.
Efforts to reach Thistledown officials to discuss the incident were unsuccessful and North Randall police did not return phone calls or emails seeking further details on the alleged incident. A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Aug. 30 in Bedford Court, Cuyahoga County. The charges are first-degree misdemeanors.
According to one source, the alleged incident occurred in the horsemen's parking area after the racing program of July 27. Rosario did not have any mounts for Exposito leading up to the alleged assault.