Wayne Consalvi was more than likely in his Man Cave on Monday night, after a long day at work. He felt relaxed, he was home alone, and his wife now had a different last name.
The first beer was a congratulatory one for himself, the next pilsner, was a cheers for his son Steve.
By his own account Steve is, “a real good student, heading to Penn State,” he told the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Steve Consalvi , a 17-year-old high school senior, went to Citizen’s Bank Park on Monday to celebrate the end of an era with his friends.
The evening was supposed to be a joyous occasion as they went to see their Philadelphia Phillies on a school night.
The minors were winding down their high school days and preparing for the, “next step,” by loading up on underage favorites Pepsi and cotton candy.
In the top of the eighth inning, Wayne started to doze off in his Laz -Y-Boy recliner, when suddenly the, “Shots, Shots, Shots,” ring tone blared from his cell phone.
He glanced down to see the caller ID read “Stevie” and Wayne instantly grew concerned.
“Hello,” he said. No answer, but he could hear screaming in the background and he knew his son was still at the baseball game.
“Hello?” he said again, but this time raising his voice in the form of a question.
Again, no answer. Wayne started to hang up the phone, when he heard Steve say “Dad!”
“Ya?” he answered.
“Dad, can I run on the field?” Steve asked. Caught off guard by the absurd question Wayne answered, “I don’t think you should, son.”
“This would be a once in a lifetime experience!” Steve said.
Before Wayne could respond, the phone went dead. Certain that this was his son pulling his leg, he resumed watching the Phillies game, only this time more intently.
What he saw in the bottom of the eighth inning baffled Wayne.
According to the Associated Press, “The fan, wearing a baseball cap, red T-shirt and khaki shorts, hopped a fence and scurried around the outfield, eluding two security officers in the bottom of the eighth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals. One officer used a Taser and the fan went down in a heap. Several Phillies placed gloves over their faces and appeared to be stifling laughter at the wild scene.”
Wayne was impressed by the Barry Sanders —like moves his son put on Paul Blart , but he knew he would have to immediately go to Chuck’s Bail Bonds.
The next day, apologies flowed freely from Steve and his family, while media across the country questioned whether or not the kid should have been tased.
Steve’s mother Amy Ziegler, reiterated her son was not under the influence of alcohol or drugs and apologized for his actions saying he regrets running onto the field.
“It was stupid. It was just absolutely stupid,” she told WTXF-TV.
“I don’t recommend running on the field, but I don’t think they should have tased him at all,” Wayne told the newspaper.
“How long can he really run around out there?” said Mary Catherine Roper , an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union in Philadelphia,
“In this situation, he’s not dangerous, he’s not getting away,” she said.
Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell called the incident “a big mistake.”
“There’s no need to use Tasers on fans who run on the field,” the former Philadelphia mayor told WCAU-TV. “We should just have enough personnel out there to surround them, take them off the field and put them in jail.”
Other people had different opinions of the force used by the police officer.
“If you’re on the streets running away from a cop, doesn’t that cop have a right to Tase you because you’re fleeing from a cop? So what’s the difference,” Phillies center fielder Shane Victorino said.
Cardinals manager Tony La Russa agreed as well. ”If somebody comes up there and does some damage, they’re going to be second-guessing not doing anything,” La Russa said. “I just think it’s acceptable, because it’s a good deterrent.”
“Don’t like being Tased? How bout don’t run onto the field. 44,817 people were at that game. 44,816 stayed in their seats. Dummy!” said ESPN’s Michael Smith.
I don’t think La Russa has a valid argument on this one. Would he have had a different answer if he was passed out drunk in his SUV and was tasered?
In the cop’s defense, I don’t blame him for tasing the kid. I wouldn’t want a national audience to know I failed the Wii Sports physical exam.
However, running onto the field of play at any sports venue is dangerous to the players and fans.
“I felt like a football team had hit me from behind. Next thing I knew, I’m on the ground trying to defend myself,” Gamboa said, suffering minor injuries in the attack.
Luckily, that type of attack during a game are few and far between. Most of the fans that run onto the field are drunks seeking their 15 minutes of fame. And most of the time it ends being tackled by a security guard, player, or mascot (you will get to see that shortly.)
In Steve’s case, this was a 17-year-old kid running around aimlessly, seeking what he called “a once in a lifetime experience” and was tased in the process by an overzealous, out of shape rent-a-cop.
Whatever floats your boat kid.
Should he have been tased? No. Was it funny as hell? YES.
I can see the irritability and safety concerns fan interference causes for players and security personnel.
But as a spectator, these videos are always fun to watch on Youtube as long as no one else gets hurt, and the clothed streaker accepts the inevitable arrest or beat down by a player on the field.