In Wichita, Kansas on December 28, 1923, World Heavyweight Champion Ed "Strangler"
Lewis was defending his title against Dick Daviscourt. In the first fall, Daviscourt beat
Lewis after 1-hour, 6-minutes, using Lewis's pet hold, the headlock. As Lewis was
walking to the dressing room after that initial loss, Lewis reportedly punched a fan named
William Goodell, who was said to have "hooted in his face." Lewis continued the match,
but was arrested afterward and taken to a local police station. Goodell, upon learning
that it was unintentional, decided not to press charges, and denied that he had "hooted"
A clever man, Billy Sandow displayed his survival techniques during an apparent
kidnapping attempt at his home at 348 Chadbourne Street in the Los Angeles area on
November 20, 1931. Two intruders accosted him, and after scarring the first man off,
Sandow was forced to display his wrestling techniques in his kitchen, disarming a second
man, and getting shot in the hand during the attack. Both men escaped. It was believed
the only intent behind the ploy was robbery, but in the vicious wrestling world, no one was
Tom Malloy, a wrestler who was establishing himself as one of the best in Florida, was
stabbed near his heart several hours after participating at a wrestling show in Pensacola
on April 26, 1932. Malloy was in critical condition after the attack and an ex-convict was
arrested in the stabbing.
On February 15, 1937 near the intersection of Sunset Boulevard and La Baig Avenue in
Los Angeles, wrestler Yukon Jake (E.L. Jackson) was attacked by a robber wielding a
pipe. Jake was smashed over his head, receiving a two-inch cut, but Jake was used to
that kind of behavior. He proceeded to pummel the robber, placing him in the steamroller
twist, and slammed him to the concrete, according to the Los Angeles Times (2/16/37).
As it was usually the case when attacking a pro wrestler, the attacker picked the wrong
man on that particular night and paid the price.
During a Monday Night wrestling show in Tampa on March 1, 1937, Denis Lentz had an
altercation with a ringside fan named Charles G. Mullen. According to the Miami Herald,
Lentz, 26, faced criminal prosecution on assault and battery. Mullen had been smashed
in the face and received both a black eye and lost two of his teeth. On March 4th, Lentz
was in a Tampa court.
On July 18, 1951, 78-year-old former nightclub operator Fred Harlow filed a $25,000
damage suit in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging that wrestler Ernie Dusek attacked
him last September during a show at the Valley Garden Arena in North Hollywood.
An unidentified fan received two cracks at Dick the Bruiser at the City Auditorium in
Omaha before over 4,000 fans on February 1, 1958 while four police officers restrained
the wrestler. The red-shirted customer pounded Bruiser’s face, who was a challenger for
the World Heavyweight Title that night against Edouard Carpentier. A welt above his face
grew over Bruiser’s left eye and the second drew blood with a round-house right to the
mouth. Needless to say, the Bruiser did not win the World Title that night. He lost in
The Associated Press reported on September 15, 1969 (Sheboygan Press) that on
Sunday, September 14, wrestler Donald Kalt and his friend Lawrence McMullen were in
a bar fight near Rochester after wrestling in Milwaukee. Kalt, 38 years of and of
Plainfield, Indiana, was shot in the legs. McMullen was "found" behind a building in
downtown Burlington, having "cuts and bruises.
Former multiple-time co-holder of the NWA World Tag Team Title in the Mid-Atlantic
Region, Ole Anderson was stabbed after a match at the Greenville Memorial Auditorium
on May 24, 1976. An 82 year-old man was charged with the assault. Oscar Henry
Ramsey stabbed Anderson in the chest as the latter walked from the ring to the dressing
room area, leaving a cut eight or nine inches long. After the initial strike, Ole kicked
Ramsey in defense, who fell to the ground and he suffered a head injury. Ramsey was
charged with assault and battery. Both men were taken to a local hospital and later
The Super Bowl of Professional Wrestling came to the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida and
with it came thousand of fans on January 25, 1978. 12,000 estimated fans witnessed the
event live. Killer Karl Kox wrestled Rocky Johnson on the undercard and their match
crew everyone’s attention. Kox pinned Johnson to end the contest, although the decision
was reversed and Kox was disqualified due to Jack and Jerry Brisco’s protests to the
referee. After the melee was over, Kox had an altercation with an audience member.
The fan, Ron Dickison, according to the Miami Herald, stabbed Kox with an umbrella. Kox
replied with a punch to the face. The situation was quickly cleared up by police and Kox
was not seriously injured in the attack, having only received a minor scrape.
The Miami Herald reported a altercation between Intercontinental Champion, Randy
Savage and a 9 year old boy during a Thursday Night World Wrestling Federation show
at the James L. Knight Convention Center on February 19, 1987. According to the
Saturday, February 21, 1987 article, Jason Huffstutlear of North Miami either went up to
slap Savage for a high five or attempted to touch Elizabeth’s, hair. Elizabeth was Savage’
s second, and usually accompanied him to the ring. Depending on the various
witnesses, Savage either punched the youth or threw a stabbing punch or jab. Jason
Huffstutlear was taken to a local hospital for a blood test and suffered a quarter-sized red
mark. He would be okay. Afterwards, both the Dade State Attorney’s Office and the
WWF investigated the situation.
Legendary grappler, Andre the Giant was arrested after allegedly attacking a television
cameraman during a WWF TV Taping at the Five Seasons Center in Cedar Rapids on
August 21, 1989. Andre had previously lost a quick match to the Ultimate Warrior. Ben
Hildebrandt, from KCRG, was taken to St. Luke’s Hospital and fitted with a cervical
collar. Andre the Giant paid his bond at the Linn County Jail and freed.
The Nasty Boys, Brian Knobbs and Jerry Saggs, were involved in an out-of-the-ring
altercation in Peoria, IL after a WWF Card there on January 5, 1992. It was noted that a
group of men followed the former WWF World Champions and Irwin R. Schyster after the
event. Knobbs would be stabbed four times. Saggs was hit with jumper cables, causing
a gash in the head and giving him a concussion.
Outside a Syracuse Nightclub on October 14, 1995, WWF Intercontinental Champion,
Shawn Michaels was attacked and pulled out of a parked car by an unknown number of
men. The injuries sustained kept him from wrestling at In Your House later in the month.
Research by Tim Hornbaker
February 14, 2011
|Wrestler Altercations with the Public