Tribune-Review – A catfish is apparently an “instrument of crime” in Pittsburgh.
Pittsburgh police on Tuesday filed misdemeanor charges against Jacob Deveral Waddell, 36, of Nolensville, Tenn., for allegedly tossing a catfish on to the PPG Paints Arena ice during the second period of Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.
So this dude just got kicked out of Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final for throwing a catfish on the ice. pic.twitter.com/DzLK6l1Mv5
— Cristiano Simonetta (@CMS_74_) May 30, 2017
Charges listed in a district court docket are: disorderly conduct, disrupting meetings and possessing instruments of crime. Waddell was escorted from the arena without incident, Pittsburgh police said in a news release.
Pittsburgh police said Waddell was charged via summons.
Waddell told police that he obtained the catfish in Tennessee, vacuum sealed it and traveled with it to Pittsburgh. On game night, he placed the fish inside his compression shorts to sneak it into PPG Paints Arena.
He then went into an arena bathroom and wrapped the fish in a free Penguins T-shirt and rally towel, before hurling it on to the ice from Section 122, according to a police criminal complaint.
Waddell told a Nashville radio station Tuesday that he drove home to Tennessee through the night after the catfish toss.
“It was absolutely worth it and I would do it a thousand more times,” he told The Midday 180 radio show on 104.5 FM, referring as himself as a “dumb redneck with a bad idea.”
The complaint described the instrument of crime as a “dead catfish,” and the meeting as a “hockey game with 18,000+ in attendance disturbed or interrupted.”
Waddell scoffed at the charges. After security and police questioned him in a detaining room, he said an officer told him to expect a charge of disorderly conduct and a fine. The other charges came as a surprise today.
“Now they come up with other trumped-up charges which are BS,” he said. “I am just stubborn enough, as you can probably tell by strapping a catfish to my crotch, to go back up there and fight it.”
— Ben Schmitt (@bencschmitt) May 30, 2017
Nashville Predators fans are known to toss large, slimy catfish on the ice for good luck during home games at Bridgestone Arena. Some may say they stole the concept from Detroit Red Wings fans who, for decades, have thrown octopi on to the ice during home games, playoff games in particular.
Waddell concocted the idea as part of a Memorial Day weekend trip to his in-laws, who live about 50 minutes away from Pittsburgh in Ohio.
First, he cut half of the catfish’s spine out, filleted and then ran it over several times with a pickup truck to flatten it. To mask the catfish stench, he said he sprayed it down with Old Spice cologne.
He sealed it and hid it his pants.
“I had a pair of underwear on, I had compression shorts on and I slid it right between the two and walked right in,” he told the radio station.
He snuck down into the lower level from upper level seats, noting that nobody checked his ticket.
Then he took out the fish and made the toss, fully expecting to be kicked out.
Penguins fans took it fairly easy on him, although he heard a few chants of “hillbilly” and “redneck,” as security escorted him out.
“I didn’t stop smiling,” he said.
@PredsMaverick Charge they may, charge they might, that Catfish still hit the ice last night!!!! Go Preds!!!
— Jake Deveral Waddell (@JacobDeveral) May 30, 2017
Wholey’s Fish Market in the Strip District declared last week that it would ask for identification before selling catfish to anyone during home games. Those producing Tennessee IDs would not be allowed to make a purchase.
Katie O’Malley, spokeswoman for Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, said on Twitter she saw the incident unfold.
It happened right in front of me. I can’t believe I missed my moment to tackle that jag with the fish. https://t.co/XqsdXNkNFu
— Katie O’Malley (@omalley1212) May 30, 2017
One Red Wings fan, Zach Smith, managed to sneak an octopus that he brought from suburban Detroit into Pittsburgh’s Mellon Arena in 2008 during the Stanley Cup Final.
Security kicked him out after he hurled it on to the ice. He later changed clothes and snuck back in with a new ticket.
Smith was never charged with a crime and did several national interviews after the incident.
So people are all up in arms today about this asshole from Nashville getting the book thrown at him by Pittsburgh police for hurling a catfish onto the ice. If I’m being totally honest, I would assume a disorderly conduct would do the trick in this case, but those yinzer cops felt a slap on the wrist wasn’t enough. So they charged this guy with “disrupting meetings” and “possessing instruments of crime.” Look, I literally have no clue what those two charges even mean, but I gotta strong feeling this guy walks away with just the disorderly charge. You know what, though? I’m glad they did this to that asshole. You have to be a real dumbass to buy a plane ticket, hotel room, and an ungodly priced Stanley Cup Final ticket, all so you can throw a rotted ass catfish onto the ice of an opposing team’s rink and get thrown out of the game by the second period. Like I’m not sure if this guy even has any brain cells left from blaring Garth Brooks in his ears for 36-straight years. Maybe he’s rich as fuck and money isn’t an issue to him, but I highly doubt it. If he’s just some “redneck” from Nashville, odds are dropping a couple thousand bucks all so he can get a little notoriety for throwing a dead fish onto the ice at PPG Paints Arena during a big game is gonna hurt this guy’s bank account. Doesn’t seem like such a great idea if you ask me. Perhaps Carrie should fork over a few bucks to help this guy out because I have a feeling Jacob is going to be regretting this decision once his 15 minutes of fame are up.
P.S. – Throwing a cat fish might’ve put a curse on the Pens from shooting pucks, but it still didn’t prevent Pekka Rinne from shitting the bed per usual against Pittsburgh.