With all the Internet chatter about the WWE’s Chris Jericho and Hurricane Helms being arrested for public drunkeness, I couldn’t help but think the police who responded were lucky they didn’t instead have to arrest Ken Patera and Mr. Saito.
Back in 1984, Patera and Saito were apparently upset that a McDonald’s in Wisconsin was closed for the night and wouldn’t serve them food. Patera hurled a boulder through the restaurant’s window and the pair went back to the hotel. Police soon came looking for them, and a brawl broke out. As Dave Meltzer in the Wrestling Observer wrote recently in his bio of Saito:
It took 18 officers to finally subdue Patera and Saito. Ten of the officers were seriously injured, six by Saito and four by Patera, including a female officer who suffered a broken leg and had to retire from police work.
Both went to prison for two years following a jury trial. When Patera got out in 1987, he came back to the WWF sans his platinum hair and did a run as a babyface feuding with Bobby Heenan (supposedly because Heenan never called him while he was locked up).
Patera’s star faded within a year or two. I remember seeing Patera and Billy Jack Haynes wrestle in the Boston Garden as a pretty lousy tag team. Unfortunately for us fans, Haynes nosedived even deeper when he became Blackblood under a hood for WCW. Ugh.