List of violent spectator incidents in sports

This list of violent spectator incidents in sports includes events in which a spectator at a sporting event was engaged in a violent confrontation with an athlete, coach or game official, either through the spectator's intrusion upon the field of play, or as a result of such an event participant entering the spectator seating area. Incidents of object or snow throwing are included when it results in injuries to a match participant or causes significant delays or cancellation of the match.

It does "not" include incidents of riots or other violence, often outside the event venue, which did not involve game participants.

1912

* On May 15, 1912, Detroit Tigers outfielder Ty Cobb assaulted Claude Lueker, a heckler, in the stands of Hilltop Park in New York during a game against the New York Highlanders. Lueker and Cobb traded insults with each other throughout the first three innings, and the situation climaxed when Lueker called Cobb a "half-nigger." Cobb then climbed into the stands and attacked the handicapped Lueker, who due to an industrial accident had lost all of one hand and three fingers on his other hand. When onlookers shouted at Cobb to stop because the man had no hands, Cobb reportedly replied, "I don't care if he has no feet!" The American League suspended him indefinitely, and his teammates, though not fond of Cobb, went on strike to protest the suspension prior to the May 18 game against the Philadelphia A's. For that one game, Detroit fielded a replacement team made up of college and sandlot ballplayers, plus two Detroit coaches, and lost, 24-2. The strike ended when Cobb urged his teammates to return to the field. Cobb's suspension lasted for 8 days.Merron, Jeff, [http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=1927560 Fighting through the years] , ESPN.com, November 20, 2004]

1922

* After being ejected from a game at The Polo Grounds in May 1922 for throwing dirt in the eyes of the umpire, Babe Ruth chased a heckler through the stands. When the fan ran out of reach, Ruth returned to the dugout roof and challenged any fan in attendance to fight him.

1940

* September 16 - A Brooklyn Dodgers fan jumped on the field to attack umpire George Magerkurth so that the fan's pickpocket partner could work the stands.

1961

* In the first half of a doubleheader at Yankee Stadium, Cleveland Indians outfielder Jimmy Piersall was attacked by two Yankee fans who ran onto the field. Piersall quickly dispatched of the first fan with a single punch then chased after the other, who was intercepted and pummeled by Indian teammates Johnny Temple and Walt Bond.

1971

* September 30 - During the ninth inning at the final game of the Washington Senators in Washington, prior to their move to Texas, disgruntled Senators fans rushed the field and forced the Senators, who were beating the New York Yankees, to forfeit the contest. Baseball would not return to the U.S. capital until 2005, when the Montréal Expos moved south and became the Washington Nationals.

1972

* January 6 - St. Louis Blues coach Al Arbour and several players entered the stands to fight fans at the Spectrum in Philadelphia, after Arbour was showered with debris.
* December 29 - Players from the Philadelphia Flyers entered the stands at the Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver after a fan reached over the glass and pulled the hair of Don Saleski. Six players were charged with assault and fined $500.

1974

* June 4, 1974 - "Ten Cent Beer Night" - In one of the most remarkably ill-conceived promotions in Major League Baseball history, fans at Cleveland Municipal Stadium for a Cleveland Indians vs. Texas Rangers game were served as many beers as they wanted for just 10¢ each. After numerous instances of drunken fans throwing debris or running onto the field — "streaking" in many instances — the situation boiled over in the 9th inning when a fan ran onto the field and snatched Rangers outfielder Jeff Burroughs' cap and glove. Burroughs' teammates charged out to his aid, followed by hundreds of rioting Cleveland fans who poured out onto the field. The game was forfeited to Texas.

1979

* July 12, 1979 - Disco Demolition Night - In a promotion conceived by Chicago DJ Steve Dahl, fans got 98¢ admission to a Comiskey Park doubleheader between the Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers in exchange for bringing in a disco record to be blown up between games. Before the "demolition", many fans began throwing their records, as well as fireworks and debris. The between-games explosion tore a large hole into the field and was followed by thousands of spectators pouring in from the stands. Thirty-seven arrests were made and the second game of the doubleheader was forfeited.

* December 23 - Members of the Boston Bruins leaped over their bench, and fought New York Rangers fans at Madison Square Garden. The incident was made famous by the Bruins' Mike Milbury removing a fan's shoe, and beating him with it.

1980

* January 19 - A bench clearing brawl involving the Edmonton Oilers and the Pittsburgh Penguins, had some Pittsburgh fans behind the Edmonton bench throw beer at Edmonton head coach Glen Sather, before he attempted to attack the fans when the plexi-glass collapsed.

1981

* On September 24, 1981, Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Reggie Smith jumped into the stands at Candlestick Park after San Francisco Giants fan Michael Dooley threw a batting helmet at him. Smith was ejected and eight fans received citations. [ [http://www.dodgerblues.com/content/features_fights.html#smith Reggie Smith attacks fan at Candlestick] , DodgerBlues.com, updated September 19, 2007]

1982

* At the Dutch Open, Ilie Nastase was so outraged with a linesman's call, he grabbed a vendor's load of ice cream cones and threw the load at the linesman, nailing some fans who were in the way.

1984

* May 19 - Edmonton Oilers fans littered the penalty box when Duane Sutter of the New York Islanders was in there. Sutter used a water bottle to squirt them back, but the fans retaliated with more litter. Security had those fans kicked off hours before the Oilers won their first Stanley Cup.

* August 12 - In a beanball war between the Atlanta Braves and San Diego Padres in Atlanta where both managers and 12 players were ejected, fans got into the act late in the game, as first one slammed a beer mug on Padre Kurt Bevacqua's head. Bevacqua gave chase but was held back by police. Shortly after, another fan ran onto the field and was taken down by Braves Chris Chambliss and Jerry Royster, when the fan attempted to take a loose helmet near third base. Five young fans, from the full stadium, were arrested during this night game for their participation during the on-field melee. The man who slammed a beer mug on Bevacqua's head faced criminal charges.

1986

* August 26 - A fan threw a Bowie hunting knife at California Angels rookie Wally Joyner at Yankee Stadium. Joyner was fortunate that he was hit on his left arm by the butt end of the knife, escaping injury.

1989

* Bounty Bowl II, December 10 - Fans of the Philadelphia Eagles at Veterans Stadium threw snowballs and beer at Dallas Cowboys players and staff throughout the game as revenge against accusations by Cowboys coach Jimmy Johnson that Eagles coach Buddy Ryan had placed a "bounty" on the head of Cowboys placekicker Luis Zendejas during a previous game.

1991

* May 11 - During a home game at Cleveland Stadium, Indians' outfielder Albert Belle threw a ball at a heckling fan and hit him in the chest. Belle received a six game suspension. [ [http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20611FE3D5D0C718DDDAC0894D9494D81 Belle Hits Fan With a Ball] , The New York Times, May 12, 1991]

* November 2 - A bench clearing brawl erupted at the end of the game between the Detroit Red Wings and the Boston Bruins where after the scrum finished, a Boston heckler was taunting and later threw a punch at Steve Yzerman when he was heading to the team's dressing room. Security stepped in quickly to break it off.

1992

* April 14 - The Buffalo Sabres-Québec Nordiques NHL game at Le Colisée saw a drunken Nordiques fan charging at the Sabres bench on the ice. Rob Ray and Colin Patterson KO ed the drunk and police quickly arrested him.

1993

* April 30 - During a tennis match in Hamburg, Germany, tennis star Monica Seles was stabbed by Günter Parche, a Steffi Graf fan, during a changeover.

1995

* January 25 - Manchester United striker Eric Cantona assaulted a fan during a game against Crystal Palace after said fan hurled racial slurs towards him. Cantona was banned for the remainder of the English Premier League season.
* February 6 - In a game at Portland, Vernon Maxwell ran into the stands and punched a fan in the face, breaking his jaw, after the fan heckled him over his wife's recent miscarriage. He was suspended for 10 games and fined $20,000 by the NBA.
* August 10, Dodger Stadium - The Los Angeles Dodgers gave out baseballs to 50,000+ paying customers as they entered the gates for a game against the St. Louis Cardinals. After a few rounds of alcohol and some close umpiring calls, many fans began pelting the field with their souvenir baseballs after Raúl Mondesí and manager Tommy Lasorda were ejected in the 9th inning. The game ended up being forfeited to the Redbirds [ [http://www.baseballlibrary.com/baseballlibrary/chronology/1995AUGUST.stm August, 1995] BaseballLibrary.com] . Following that incident, Major League Baseball mandated that should baseballs be given away as a promotional item, the giveaway would follow the game.
* September 28 - Chicago Cubs pitcher Randy Myers was attacked on the mound by a fan at Wrigley Field after giving up a home run. Myers held the fan on the ground until authorities arrested him.
* December 17 - Cleveland Browns fans irate at their teams' impending relocation to Baltimore, tore seats loose and threw them at the field and set small fires throughout Cleveland Stadium.
* December 23 - New York Giants fans threw hundreds of snowballs and chunks of ice at San Diego Chargers players and officials, injuring fifteen people including Chargers equipment manager Sid Brooks. A total of 15 arrests were made and 175 fans were ejected from Giants Stadium by police. As a result, 75 season-ticket holders had their rights to those tickets revoked. [ [http://www.cnn.com/US/Newsbriefs/9512/12-27/index.html#8 Giants season-ticket holders punished for snowball barrage] , CNN.com, December 27, 1995] . Since then, the NFL has mandated that for the safety of those involved, seating areas must be cleared of all snow and ice prior to the opening of stadium gates.

1996

*November 26, Northlands Coliseum - Calgary Flames forward Sasha Lakovic attempted to climb the glass behind the players bench to get at a drunken Edmonton Oilers fan who poured a beverage on assistant coach Guy Lapointe's head. Lakovic, who was restrained by his teammates, was suspended two games without pay, while the Oilers were fined $20,000 for having inadequate security. [Francis, Eric, [http://www.canoe.ca/Slam030919/col_francis-sun.html The Uncivil War] , Calgary Sun, September 19, 2003] The incident was broadcast on The CBC.

*During a night Australian Football League Round 10 match at Waverley Park in Melbourne between the Essendon Football Club and St Kilda Football Club, an unexpected pitch invasion occurred when the lights blacked out during the third quarter. In the midst of the chaos, a few thousand restless fans rioted and stormed the ground. Some lit bonfires in the centre pitch. Two of the smaller goal (behind) posts were removed by spectators. The incident was filmed on Network Seven. [ [http://home.vicnet.net.au/~brad/96/round10.htm Round 10 1996, Essendon vs. St Kilda] , Bomber Internet]

*On March 13, 1996, India played Sri Lanka in the Cricket World Cup semi-final at Eden Gardens, Kolkata, India. Approxmiately 110,000 spectators were present at the ground. Chasing Sri Lanka's innings of 251 for 8, India had slumped to 120 for 8 in the 35th over when sections of crowd began to throw fruit and plastic bottles onto the field. The players left the field for 20 minutes in an attempt to quiet the crowd. When the players returned for play, more bottles were thrown onto the field and fires were lit in the stand and the crowd begain to riot. Match referee Clive Lloyd awarded the match to Sri Lanka, the first default ever in a Test or One Day International.

1998

* In a CUB Series ODI cricket match between Australia and England at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, unruly behaviour from the crowd, including throwing objects on the field, forced England captain Alec Stewart to call Shane Warne out from the dressing room to settle down his home town crowd's behaviour.

1999

* On May 2, four Celtic fans were arrested - and banned from Celtic Park for life - after invading the pitch during the Scottish Premier League match with rivals Rangers at Celtic Park, and referee Hugh Dallas was struck on the head with a missile (thought to have been a coin), causing him to need attention for a cut. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/334172.stm Violence mars Old Firm game] , BBC News, May 3, 1999] The Rangers team were also pelted with various objects on leaving the pitch at the end of the game. Another fan who attempted to remonstrate with Dallas from the upper tier fell over the balcony to the lower tier. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sport/football/scottish_premier/334094.stm Rangers make history out of chaos] , BBC News, May 3, 1999] The game was shown live on the satellite television channel Sky Sports.

*On August 10, during a game at Philadelphia's Veterans Stadium, two D-Cell batteries were thrown at St. Louis Cardinals outfielder J.D. Drew. Drew had been drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies years earlier but expressed disappointment with the franchise and held out in order to avoid playing with them. Eventually he re-entered the draft and was chosen by St. Louis.

* On September 24, Houston Astros outfielder Billy Spiers was attacked while standing in right field in Milwaukee County Stadium. Spiers suffered slight injuries, and the assailant, Berley W. Visgar, was sentenced to 90 days in jail.

* November 23 - After being pelted with heavy, wet snowballs throughout the second half of a game against the Denver Broncos, Charles Woodson of the Oakland Raiders retaliated by throwing a hard snowball back into the crowd, hitting a woman in the face. An arrest warrant was later issued for Woodson. In the same game, Raiders tackle Lincoln Kennedy entered the stands and punched a Broncos fan in the face [Nevius, C.W. & Swan, Gary, [http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/1999/11/24/MN81813.DTL Raiders' Woodson to Face Charges in Snow Melee] , San Francisco Chronicle, November 24, 1999] .

2000

* On May 16, 2000, a fan at Wrigley Field in Chicago grabbed the baseball cap off the head of the Los Angeles Dodgers' Chad Kreuter, starting a melee in which Dodgers players including Raúl Mondesí, Gary Sheffield, Darren Dreifort, Adrián Beltré, and Todd Hundley entered the stands to fight fans. [Slezak, Carol, [http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4155/is_20000824/ai_n13871534 Subpoenas await brawling Dodgers] , Chicago Sun-Times, August 24, 2000]

2001

* March 29 - Toronto Maple Leafs player Tie Domi and a fan got into a scuffle in the penalty box during a game against the Philadelphia Flyers at the First Union Center, after the enraged fan (after having water shot at another Flyer fan by Domi) leaned over the glass which separated spectators from the penalty box to confront Domi. The glass panel came loose and the fan's momentum carried him into the box where Domi had been seated, at which point the scuffle ensued.
* September 1 - Geelong Football Club player Darren Milburn executed a very late bump on Carlton Football Club's Steven Silvagni, collecting Silvagni's head with his hip; Silvagni hit the ground unconscious. After being substituted with another player, fans threatened Milburn and attempted to enter the interchange box to assault him, and again attempted to attack him in the car park and after the game.
*During a December 16 game versus the Jacksonville Jaguars, Cleveland Browns fans angered by the overturning of a referee's call late in the fourth quarter threw garbage on to the field, including hundreds of plastic beer bottles resulting in a thirty-minute delay. Referees as well as players on both teams were struck by debris [ [http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/news/2001/12/16/jaguars_browns_ap/ Fans get unruly about overturned call in final minute] , SI.com, December 17, 2001] .

2002

*September 16- A fight broke out amongst fans at FedEx Field during a Monday Night Football meeting between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Washington Redskins with about six minutes remaining in the fourth quarter. Police attempted to stop the crowd by using pepper spray, while this worked, the mist hit air blowers near the Eagles bench which hit the players, resulting in an eight minute delay of the game. [Maske, Mark. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A26242-2002Sep16.html Not Ready for Prime Time] , "The Washington Post", September 17, 2002]
* September 19-Kansas City Royals first base coach Tom Gamboa was violently assaulted by a drunken father and son, William Ligue Jr. and Sr., at Comiskey Park in Chicago. [ [http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/news/2002/09/19/royals_whitesox_ap/ Royals first base coach assaulted by father-son duo] , CNNSI.com, September 21, 2002]
*November 23 - Aloha Stadium - Honolulu, Hawaii - University of Cincinnati at Hawaii college football - As tensions between the two teams build throughout a penalty-filled game, a controversial late hit on the already injured Hawaii quarterback Timmy Chang causes fights break out between both teams' players as well as mascots. Cincinnati's athletic director Bob Goin accuses Hawaii fans of threatening Cincinnati players, coaches, and cheerleaders throughout the game [ [http://espn.go.com/ncf/news/2002/1124/1465939.html Police have to separate both teams after game - ESPN.com] ] and police use pepper spray on fans who threw garbage at Cincinnati players after the game. [ [http://archives.starbulletin.com/2007/10/05/sports/story01.html UH unveils opponents for 2008 - Honolulu Star-Bulletin] ]
* During an Australian Football League match between Carlton Football Club and the West Coast Eagles at Optus Oval, field umpires were abused and a bottle was thrown, causing the league to review security at the venue. [ [http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200206/s583985.htm AFL under pressure to clamp down on crowd violence] ]

2003

* November 2 - Manchester United goalkeeper Fabien Barthez punched a fan who ran onto the pitch towards him during a match against Southampton.
*In an April game in Chicago between the Chicago White Sox and the Kansas City Royals, a fan ran on to the field (mid-play) and tried to tackle umpire Laz Diaz. Diaz, who used to be in the Marines, threw the fan to the ground.
* In October, a grounds crew member at Fenway Park got into an altercation with New York Yankees relief pitcher Jeff Nelson, which resulted in Nelson and Yankees right fielder Karim Garcia jumping the grounds crew member. Charges were pressed later on.

2004

* On April 22 at Docklands Stadium during an Australian Football League match between Richmond and Adelaide, a spectator from Brisbane spat on Richmond coach Danny Frawley and other club officials. The controversial incident was captured on Australian national television and the supporter was identified and later questioned. [ [http://www.abc.net.au/victoria/news/200405/s1101482.htm Qld police interview man over AFL spitting incident] ]
* On April 26 at a NASCAR Nextel Cup race at Talladega Superspeedway, Jeff Gordon won in a controversial ending where he passed NASCAR's most popular driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. and the race ended under caution causing fans to throw trash and debris onto the racetrack. Gordon then defiantly performed a victory "doughnut" over the thrown debris. This race then subsequently caused NASCAR to start the green-white-checker finish. [Smith, Marty, [http://www.nascar.com/2004/news/opinion/smith/04/27/lastlap_talladega/ Last L
] , NASCAR.com, April 27, 2004
]
* On August 29, during the men's marathon event at the 2004 Summer Olympics, defrocked Irish priest Neil Horan burst out of the crowd to accost race leader Vanderlei de Lima – an action which may have cost de Lima the gold medal, although many observers have noted that he was losing ground to Stefano Baldini of Italy and Mebrahtom Keflezighi of the United States even before the attack, and they likely would have caught him anyway. De Lima ultimately placed third in the race, behind Baldini (who won) and Keflezighi. [ [http://www.letsrun.com/2004/accost.php Athens Olympic Marathon Leader Vanderlei de Lima is Accosted by a Deranged Irish Fan Around Mile 23] (Photo), LetsRun.com] De Lima later declined to protest the result, for which the IOC compensated him with the De Coubertin medal.
* On September 13, 2004, Texas Rangers pitcher Frank Francisco threw a chair at a fan during the Rangers' game against the Oakland Athletics in Oakland's Network Associates Coliseum, breaking a woman's nose. [ [http://www.spursreport.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-16680.html Rangers Player Breaks Female Fan's Nose] ]
* On September 29, reacting from a fan throwing a plastic beer bottle on the field during a home game against the Colorado Rockies, Milton Bradley of the Los Angeles Dodgers threw it from the field violently into the front row. Major League Baseball suspended him for five games. As Bradley walked from right field to the Dodgers' dugout, he took his jersey and hat off. With the crowd behind the dugout booing, Bradley gestured with palms up, urging the fans on.
* Pacers-Pistons brawl - On November 19, near the end of an NBA game between the Indiana Pacers and the Detroit Pistons, a brawl erupted between Pacers players and Pistons supporters in one of sports' most infamous incidents.
* South Carolina-Clemson brawl - Less than 24 hours after "The Malace in The Palace", on November 20, the college football teams from South Carolina and Clemson were involved in a melee during their annual rivalry game. The schools instituted self-inflicted punishments by not allowing to play in post-season bowl games that year, in spite of both teams having winning records.

2005

* In April, a fan at Fenway Park took a swing at Yankees right fielder Gary Sheffield as he was fielding a ball in play, prompting Sheffield to take a swing at the fan. While this was happening, another fan threw a beer at Sheffield, then jumped back tripping over the fan next to him. After throwing the ball back into the field of play, Sheffield approached the fan who swung at him, before a lone security guard interfened. The fan was ejected, and had his season tickets revoked.
* April 12 - In the 74th minute of a UEFA Champions League match versus crosstown rivals Inter Milan, A.C. Milan goalkeeper Dida was hit in the shoulder with a flare thrown at him from the crowd. Dida suffers only minor burns but was unable to continue the match. After a 30 minute delay to clear burning flares from the pitch, the match was briefly restarted before another round of debris-throwing forces the cancellation of the match.
* April 26 - Allen Iverson was struck by a coin that was thrown by a Detroit Pistons fan. Iverson was on the bench and remained calm while security and police removed the suspect, with the help of witnesses that saw the incident.
* In November, a ODI cricket match in the Chappell-Hadlee Series between Australia and New Zealand involved members of the New Zealand crowd throwing dangerous objects at Australian players.

2006

* November 11 - At an FA Cup match between Newport County and Swansea City, fourth official Alan Sheffield was struck in the face with a £1 coin thrown at him from the crowd after Sheffield engaged in a dispute with Newport manager Peter Beadle. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/south_east/6139744.stm Coin thrower injures cup official] , BBC News, November 11, 2006] The impact cut an artery, and Sheffield was rushed into surgery, requiring seven stitches. It was the most serious of several coin-throwing incidents during the month, with Fulham's Claus Jensen and Arsenal's Robin van Persie also being hit with coins. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/f/fulham/6124884.stm Fulham vow to find coin thrower] , BBC News, November 7, 2006]

* May 28 - During an Australian Football League match between the Kangaroos Football Club and St Kilda Football Club, a Kangaroos supporter had a confrontation with the club's coach Dean Laidley during a period of consistently poor performances. The supporter twice made provocative remarks to which Laidley responded with a verbal barrage, later inviting the supporter to the club rooms to see how badly the players were feeling due to their on field performance. The footage was captured on television and broadcast nationally in Australia. The apparently fanatical Kangaroos supporter committed suicide in the path of an oncoming train on May 29th. [ [http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2006/05/30/1148754977717.html Fan's death 'devastating': Laidley] ] The man's family, police and the Kangaroos stated the death was unrelated, however there were widespread calls for Laidley to be fined for the incident.

*December 8 - During an A-League match between Melbourne Victory and Sydney FC at the Telstra Dome, fans lit flares which caused breathing difficulties for spectators in the enclosed venue and the evacuation of stands. Three men were charged with assault. [ [http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,,20900708-661,00.html Crowd violence mars record night] ]

2007

* January 21 - In a rugby union match between Toulouse and Ulster, Toulouse player Trevor Brennan jumped into a section of the crowd housing Ulster supporters and struck Ulster fan Patrick Bamford. Brennan alleged afterwards that remarks about his mother triggered his reaction. In their investigation of the incident European Rugby found no such abuse took place. They found that Brennan was being baited over the standard of Brennan's Bar, which he co-owns in Toulouse. Brennan initially received a life ban from rugby, which was then reduced to a five year suspension prompting his retirement. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/rugby_union/my_club/ulster/6741763.stm Brennan ban reduced to five years] , BBC News, June 11, 2007] Bamford successfully sued the Guardian, among others, for libel concerning reports that suggested he had shouted sectarian abuse. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/7103602.stm Ulster fan awarded libel damages] , BBC News, November 20, 2007]

* March 20 - Following Chelsea's 2-1 victory over Tottenham in an FA Cup quarter-finals match at White Hart Lane, Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard is attacked by Tottenham fan Tim Smith, who invades the pitch and throws a clumsy punch at him. [Cross, John, [http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/tm_headline=lampard--never-again&method=full&objectid=18784809&siteid=89520-name_page.html Lampard:Never Again] , The Mirror] Footage appears to show Lampard's teammate Didier Drogba stomping on Smith after Chelsea's fitness coach Rui Faria had wrestled Smith to the ground. [Cross, John, [http://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/tm_headline=drogba-faces-probe&method=full&objectid=18784813&siteid=89520-name_page.html Drogba faces probe] , The Mirror]

*April 21 - Following Jeff Gordon winning the Subway Fresh Fit 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, tying the late Dale Earnhardt with 76 wins, a handful of Earnhardt fans threw full beverage cans at Gordon's car as he celebrated the victory and paid tribute to Earnhardt. A week later at the Aaron's 499 on April 29 at Talladega Superspeedway, a track where Earnhardt and particularly his son Dale Earnhardt, Jr. have a strong following and a track that had a history of fans throwing debris at Gordon (see 2004 above), Gordon won the race again, this time surpassing Earnhardt, Sr. on the all-time wins list. A much larger number of fans threw beverage cans and other debris on the track and at Gordon's car following his victory. Fourteen fans were arrested and banned for life from buying tickets from the speedway. [ [http://sports.espn.go.com/rpm/news/story?seriesId=2&id=2857281 Fourteen fans barred from buying tickets at Talladega] , ESPN.com, May 2, 2007]

*May 23 - During an AHL playoff game, Kip Brennan of the Hershey Bears was attacked by a Manchester Monarchs fan in the penalty box area. Brennan ripped the fan's shirt during the fight and was suspended by the league for the remainder of the playoffs. The fan was later ejected from the arena.

*May 28 - NBA Utah Jazz fans gave way to frustration in the fourth quarter of Game 4 of the 2007 Western Conference Finals in Salt Lake City - with most of it aimed at San Antonio Spurs forward Manu Ginóbili and his flair for drawing fouls. In an ugly-but-effective overall team performance in which the Spurs made more free throws (30) than field goals (28). Contributing to that discrepancy were four technical fouls called against Utah in the fourth. The subsequent ejections of Utah head coach Jerry Sloan and Jazz guard Derek Fisher had a charged-up EnergySolutions Arena crowd raining debris onto the court in protest. After the Spurs won the game 91-79, Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich rushed his team safe into the locker room instead of post game interviews.

* With the score tied 3-3 in the 89th minute of a UEFA European Football Championship match between Sweden and Denmark, an unidentified Danish fan storms the pitch and punches referee Herbert Fandel after Sweden is awarded a penalty kick following the issue of a straight-red card to Denmark midfielder Christian Poulsen. Following the attack, the match is abandoned and UEFA awards Sweden the victory. [ [http://www.hamiltonspectator.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=hamilton/Layout/Article_Type1&c=Article&cid=1181017635836&call_pageid=1112274690688&col=1112274690734 'Idiot' fan apologizes for striking ref] , Hamilton Spectator, June 5, 2007] (See 2008 UEFA qualifier fan attack)

*October 3 - Following Celtic's late goal in the Champions League Group D clash against AC Milan which resulted in a 2-1 victory, a Celtic supporter runs from one side of the pitch to the other, while running past AC Milan goalkeeper Dida the fan makes minor contact to the side of his face. Dida goes down clutching his face in apparent agony and is stretchered off. [ [http://news.sky.com/skynews/video/videoplayer/0,,31200-1286958,.html Keeper 'Floored' by fan at football match] (Video), Sky News] Several other Celtic fans crush advertising hoardings at the side of the pitch as they also try to reach celebrating Celtic players on the field of play.

* November 11 - A policeman near Arezzo, attempting to break up a fight between Juventus and S.S. Lazio fans, shoots and kills Lazio supporter Gabriele Sandri. As news of the killing spreads across Italy, a match between A.C. Milan and Atalanta B.C. is abandoned after seven minutes after fans attempt to destroy a glass barrier separating them from the pitch [Kington, Tom, [http://football.guardian.co.uk/News_Story/0,,2209451,00.html Italian football fan shot dead by police as rival supporters clash at service station] , The Guardian, November 12, 2007]

2008

* July 24, 2008 - During a minor league "A" level baseball game, pitcher Julio Castillo of the Peoria Chiefs was arrested and charged for throwing a baseball that hit a fan in the stands. It was intended to be thrown in the dugout of the Dayton Dragons which resulted in a 10-minute brawl. Castillo was arraigned the next day and ordered held a $50,000 bond. He also had to surrender his passport.

References


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