Did Rogers Call The Cops On A Jays Fan Who Threated The Ted Rogers Statue?

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The text below is just one person’s story from Reddit, so take that for what it’s worth. And if you’re being a stickler for taking it seriously, he did threaten the destruction of property.

On the other hand… seriously?

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I… uh… seriously?

I hope that didn’t happen. And I will fully admit I don’t know anything about what this guy’s history might be, or anything else that might help make this incident not sound as excessive and ridiculous as it sounds. Because as it is it sounds pretty incredibly excessive and ridiculous. Not because we should condone inflicting damage on that poor, defenceless, in-severely-poor-taste, slap-in-the-face-to-fans-and-Jays-legends-and-the-meaning-of-sports-to-a-community-and-the-SkyDome-site-to-this-community-alike slab of bronze. But because… c’mon.

Tone deaf (allegedly) is as tone deaf (allegedly) does, I guess.

UPDATE

Hmmm… OK, so maybe our aggrieved friend here was painting a sliiiiiiightly sympathetic portrait of himself. To wit:

Uh… yeah, but still though! Or… I don’t even know anymore, maybe not.

That doesn’t exactly mean this is a total non-story though…

Right??

UPDATE THE SECOND

To answer the question posed by the title of this post: yes, Rogers did alert the authorities on this.

From CBC.ca:

Toronto police Const. Allyson Douglas-Cook said Rogers Centre security alerted authorities about Kharshoum’s threat and at least one other. Both threats were investigated by the cyber crimes unit.

Douglas-Cook said while some people may say police overreacted, damaging property is a criminal offence.

A Rogers spokesperson, Jennifer Kett, added that they “always err on the side of caution when the safety of our employees, property or fans at the Rogers Centre is threatened.”

That’s a perfectly reasonable position for the company to take, but one can’t help but wonder what went on behind the scenes that had this, of all things, getting actual police involved — both in Toronto and Kitchener-Waterloo, as that’s where @TorontoHooligan (aka Nicholas Kharshoum, per the CBC report) is from. It was Waterloo Regional Police officers, acting on behalf of TPS, who paid him the visit.

Because, again, as much as there is the element of the Jays in this story, the broader issue remains why this threat against a corporate statue gets traction and not, say, online threats against actual people. To wit:

That issue is big and important and deserves better than what a guy who is about to write about Aaron Sanchez and Gavin Floyd can say about it in a couple lines in the third update of a post about an awful statue, but seriously!

      • Handsome Normale

        What if I was? Would that excuse your snark?

        Fwiw, I’ve been following you since ’09 or so. But by all means, keep acting like a dickhead if you want, ive long known your gimmick

        • My snark is excused by the fact that you’re offering unsolicited and unwelcome (bad) editorial advice. Thanks but no thanks, and if you’ve been following as long as you say, you should know by now a) what I post about, and b) that I don’t suffer fools or trolls gladly (which you freely admit that you do know!).

          If you think my calling out your bad, snarky, pretend-genuine comment is wrong, I don’t want to be right. Don’t overexert yourself rushing to the high ground. LOL

      • allisauce

        I mean, sure.

        But threats are made against women *all the time* and nothing is done about it. It’s more important because Rogers “demanded it”?

        That’s pretty awful.

      • bpersaud

        I feel like this point is spot on.

        threats are issued on Twitter daily especially to real people, everything from kidnapping, rape to murder, yet the TPS does not go into great lengths to issue verbal warnings or arrests against all of them.

        Now I understand part of that has to do with it being reported by the person threatened, but how many of you have experienced a friend or family member who went to police after being threatened over the internet/phone and having the response from police be “sorry there is nothing we can do for you unless the person does physically do something”.

        I know I’ve experienced this statement by police multiple times not just once.

        That’s why this story upsets me to the core.

  • b4 the windup

    I think of the video of those thirty/forty/however-many people in Iraq slowly wrestling down that statue of Saddam Hussein, off its pedestal those years ago.

    And then I think of the outraged baseball-fan-tweet that I would’ve nodded in humoured agreement to had I seen it. (Cuz frankly and honestly, if they don’t re-sign Jose Bautista I’ll be pissed enough that I *will* feel differently about this team, at least for a while. And I’ll dislike Rogers even more than I already do).

    And then I think of the thumping door-knock of the local authorities at the tweeter’s home that someone caused to actually make happen.

    Man. Serious douchebaggery.

    • Player to Be Named Later

      Can someone do a photoshop of that video in which the Ted statue is the one getting pulled down? Cuz that would be golden — and totally, legally, un-actionable!

      What if people spread massive amounts of bird seed around the statue every day, so that it became a permanent ground-zero for pigeons and hence, forever covered in bird s**t? Thinking outside the box.

  • Barry

    In other news, US Homeland security is investigating the Toronto Blue Jays after numerous tweets reporting the Jays are going to destroy New York over the course of the next six months.

  • Steve-O

    It’s been made by others but the point needs to be restated – the story here is that an online threat to an inanimate object got taken more seriously than online threats against women.

    Nice society we’ve got here. Just awful.

  • OakvilleJays

    I think Rogers has a right to file a complaint. Don’t Police have the discretion in these matters to tell Rogers that it isn’t serious.

    I wonder if Rogers will set up a department to monitor all fan boards like this one & ask police to investigate anyone that harshly criticizes the team ?. No one should make violent threats but c’mon it’s a baseball team.

    • Barry

      Relocation might have become a possibility simply because no one else was stepping up to buy the team, but realistically, I think that would have been a remote possibility. The Jays were not in the Expos situation, and had won the World Series only seven years earlier, had had a spectacular attendance history that was in a bit of a funk at the time but not nearly bad enough or long enough for MLB to think relocation was a good idea.

      To compare: at the time Rogers bought the team the Jays had not had attendance under 2 million since 1982. The Expos had not had attendance OVER 2 million since 1983. Rightly or wrongly, the Expos’ situation was seen as dire on many fronts (remember the TV situation, too). That’s what it takes for MLB to seriously consider moving a team, and the Jays were nowhere near that situation.

      Was it possible? I suppose … though no one was talking about it at the time. It was far more likely that MLB would find a way to get someone to buy the team and keep it in Toronto. Toronto was and is a good market and MLB was motivated to keep the Jays there.

      I think the worst case scenario would have been that there was a non-Canadian owner, but one that was committed to keeping the team in Toronto.

      • OakvilleJays

        OK Thanks. I didn’t follow the Jays closely till 2008. I was an Expos fan. I knew the Expos had severe financial problems but that was much worse than the Jays ever faced.

  • theweave

    I know this may not make me popular but that is not the point. This was not a waaste of police resources. The police were doing their job. Their job is to investigate crime or threats. To the person who did the tweet, your privacy was not invaded. The police had every right to track you down as part of their investigation. They can trace you through your ISP. There is no where to hide on the internet.

    I know that this sounds like a petty thing to involve police in but look at it this way. Suppose the tweeter was upset at Rogers and instead,went to Rogers Centre and caused violence against someone. This could have been prevented if the original tweet was acted upon.

    These days police can’t tell which is a joke and which may not be a joke. So please be careful what you post, tweet etc.

    • Barry

      But what a lot of people have taken issue with is the apparent double-standard.

      The tweet in question looked like nothing more than someone spouting off. I honestly don’t know how it could be taken as a credible threat, but for the sake of discussion, let’s say it was borderline.

      Sure, investigate it. But if the police are going to investigate that, why, as has been pointed out, do they not investigate similar — or worse — threats that aren’t against a statue of the former head of a major corporation?

      When a female blogger was the victim of a series of tweets threatening to rape her and the police said it didn’t seem like a credible threat … but they found THIS threat to an inanimate object worthy of follow-up … well, that’s what gets some people.