Many football fans have an intense loyalty to their favorite team. This is especially true in light of the upcoming Super Bowl. Emotions can fly-high during the course of a game, which can lead people to take unwise actions. One man recently pled not guilty to criminal charges of assault with a stun gun while attending a Jets game in New Jersey.
The man, who recently turned 60-years-old, attended a September 2011 Jets game against the Dallas Cowboys at MetLife Stadium. An altercation began when the man did not stand for the National Anthem, which angered nearby fans. According to authorities, the man assaulted other fans with a stun gun in an incident in which no one was seriously hurt. He was arrested that day.
Since the incident, the man has been charged with a total of eight criminal counts, including aggravated assault and unlawful possession of a weapon. The man turned down a plea bargain for three years in prison. A spokesman for the man indicated that time behind bars is not "appropriate for this case."
The trial is now proceeding and the man pleaded not guilty to all of the charges levied against him. During a hearing, the man required the assistance of a cane to walk into the courtroom. If he is convicted, the man could face anywhere between five and 10 years in prison. The trial is scheduled to resume during the coming months.
The full details of the incident will unfold over the course of the trial. Apparently the man chose to remain seated during the anthem, which is a choice he has the right to make whether or not others agree with him. During the heat of an argument, people make bad choices they otherwise would never consider. As this trial plays out, the facts of the case will be revealed and the man will receive the kind of defense to which he is entitled.
Source: Fox News, "Fan pleads not guilty in Jets game stun gun case," Jan. 30, 2012