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L.A. Incident Increases Concern Of Sports Fan Violence In Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The savage beating of a San Francisco Giants fan in the parking lot of Dodger Stadium has touched off fresh concerns about fan violence at sporting events.

Phillies and Mets fans have restrained themselves during this week’s series between the two traditionally rival teams, and local sports psychologist Dr. Joel Fish says that’s a good thing.

But it doesn’t take much to enflame tempers to the boiling point, he notes.

“Most of these fan violence situations take place in crowds, where all of a sudden we get caught up in the heat of the moment and we act oftentimes differently than we act in any other situation,” he says.   “I’ve talked to many people who the next day, after being in a crowd situation, say, ‘I can’t believe I did that, I can’t believe I said that.’ ”

Police in Los Angeles are still searching for the two men who beat and kicked Giants fan Bryan Stow in the head after a Dodgers-Giants game. Stow suffered a fractured skull and probable brain damage (see related story).

“I think the pressure to win at all levels produces excess fan behavior,” Fish notes, “and until we curb that notion that ‘winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing,’ we’re gonna see more of these kind of incidents.”

And Fish predicts that more teams will impose fan conduct behavior policies.

Reported by Paul Kurtz, KYW Newsradio 1060.

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  • Francis Elster

    I doubt that sports is the main drive towards the violence we’ve seen at sporting events. Sports are being used as an excuse for bad behavior by a few fans. Troublemakers are going to find a way to cause trouble no matter where they are. Isn’t there violence being perp’d all over, not just sporting events? Philly, greatest sports fans in the WORLD.

  • 4 for 4 guy

    Get over yourself Observant One….

  • Observant One

    Censorship over my remark. This nation is far worse than Nazi Germany or what the Israelis do to the Palestinians.

    • JB

      Wow worse than Nazi Germany or Israel/Palestine? That’s obscenely overboard. Calm down. And hey, was it that hard to stand up for 2 minutes? Racism is wrong, but if you’re purposely going to go against the crowd, people will be upset.

  • Observant One

    I do not even go to any sports events in Philadelphia because the last time I went to a Sixer’s game above me seated were a bunch of white attendees using every type of racial remark they could think of towards some of the Black basketball players. I thought that was so ironic for them to show so much hatred at the game yet could be entertained by this same athletes at the same time. Also they were apearantly spilling beer unto others sitting below. It would not be worth paying the admission fare then end up in jail on a murder or assault criminal charge so I stay away.
    I went to a Phillies game many years ago and had a similar experience with white baseball fans when I did not stand up for the singing of the National Athem. I heard all type of racist directed remarks directed towards my wife and I. When I looked around to see who had make the remarks everyone was silent.

  • grumpy

    As if beer isn’t enough, Boston is going to start selling mixed drinks. NOT a family atmosphere anymore!grumpy

  • Bill Andrews

    No beer? Let’s say half the crowd has two beers apiece. If you go to games you know this is true. $8 a beer x 2 x 25000 = 1/2 MILLION PER GAME. It aint gonna happen.

  • Bill Andrews

    Gangs are rampant at Dodgers games. The Philly incident was punks. Probably no daddys to teach them not to kill.

  • Thomas Lee

    In extreme cases I suggest punishing fans the way FC Liverpool fans were after the Heysel Stadium disaster. Punish the fans by sanctions on the team they are supporting.

    Alcohol also strongly contributes to fan violence. I think the stadium should ban beer It works in Europe.

  • Bob

    WHY manufacture a non-existent Philly angle & headline to this horrible incident ??? This is a prime example of the media frenzy that feeds on ( & into) this city’s all-too- common reflex to gravitate towards the negative…irresponsible & sensationalist imo.

    • Scot Dence

      Well said! I’m with you why does the media always have to bring Philadelphia fans into everything.

  • Rick

    Such an unfortunate incident. I truly hope they catch the thugs who did this, but I doubt very seriously that they will. Fan violence anywhere is an atrocity, but what makes this L.A. incident unique is the element of gang affiliation with some Dodgers’ fans, and this gang affiliation is very organized and powerful in L.A. Not only are there fans of the team that are gang members, but they’re employees of the stadium that are gang affiliated as well, and they all have a territorial mentality w/ Dodgers Stadium…this particular incident goes a bit deeper than just fans behaving badly, there is a level of organized crime involved as well.

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