Milwaukee gets involved in Seattle’s “real life superhero” controversy
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Say what you will about so-called “real life superheroes”—that they’re faintly ridiculous; that they’re nothing more than deluded goofballs in lousy Halloween Express costumes—but they sure know how to get some press. They do that even when it’s not quite the press they hope to get.
Take Seattle’s RLSH, “Phoenix Jones.” Early Sunday morning, Jones was arrested after allegedly attacking several people with pepper spray. Jones claims he was only trying to break up a street brawl, and that he used the spray only after being attacked himself. Accompanying Jones on his ill-fated “patrol” was Milwaukee’s Tea Krulos, a proponent of the local RLSH movement, and the author of an upcoming book on the subject. Krulos was interviewed by msnbc.com about this incident, and claimed in that interview that Jones was only protecting his fellow citizens:
“Six or seven guys were beating up two other guys,” Krulos said, adding he heard “loud, aggressive noises.” One victim was thrown to the ground and kicked in the ribs. “Two other guys were wrestling with each other but not in a playful way—and people were screaming.”
“Nobody was dancing, it was not ambiguous, there was definitely fighting,” he said.
On his Heroes In The Night blog, Krulos had this to add:
Well, it’s been a crazy weekend in Seattle. The media is blowing up with the story of Phoenix Jones being detained after intervening in a brawl. I was there. I witnessed the whole thing. I even got punched a couple times myself.
I will be giving a full account on the blog tomorrow. For now I want to dispute one thing—the people Phoenix disrupted WERE NOT DANCING/ “FROLICKING,” or “having a good time.”
They were beating the crap out of two people.
UPDATE: Krulos had this to say to The A.V. Club:
I don’t really condone or condemn Phoenix Jones’ tactics. However, the reports circulating about him are completely untrue. The police report was based on the word of the people attacking two people who fled the scene. The media, in turn, began to report this as fact and began reporting that Jones had snuck up on a group of people “dancing.”
Trust me, Tea Krulos knows a dance party when he sees one, and that was not a dance party. As we were approaching the group we saw one guy slam another guy on the ground and begin to kick him and two other guys were grappling each other. Phoenix Jones ran into the group and told the guys to back up. When they didn’t, he sprayed them with a high octane pepper spray. Things got pretty chaotic from there. Someone hit another person with a car, one of the girlfriends of the attackers began to hit Jones with her high heel shoe—I even got punched in the face by a Russian dude while I was calling 911, Ryan also got thrown into a wall. The Russian dudes also got in their escalade and tried to run Jones down at one point.
When the cops showed up, one of them was pretty pissed off and not at all happy to see Mr. Jones. An officer read me, Phoenix and Ryan our Miranda rights, but after he found out me and Ryan were media he told us to get out of there—didn’t take statements. They detained Jones and kept him over night, released him but confiscated his “super suit” as he calls it. He will appear in court later in the week.
A video of the incident can be found here. Dancing/frolicking, or beating/assaulting? And has the RLSH thing finally gone too far?