Florida Man Report – September 18

September 18 – MMA Coaches Take Down Florida Man Trying to Steal Pokémon Cards

A 33-year-old Florida man running away with $30,000 worth of Pokémon trading card was brought down and subdued by two jiu-jitsu instructors who coach mixed-martial arts fighters at a gym near Coral Gables. According to a news segment aired by WTVJ Channel 4 News, the main NBC affiliate in the Miami region, Jasiel Manfarrol entered the Pro Play Games store and asked to see the premium binder of Pokemon trading cards, which he was not going to pay for.

The large binder in question held approximately 3,000 cards, and its total value was $30,000, thus placing it on the starter tier of the premium Pokémon cards. This value is impressive when considering that the Pokémon Trading Card Game was released in the mid-1990s after the early video games for the Nintendo Game Boy handheld device; however, a first-edition Shadowless Charizard card can easily sell for more than $200,000.

Manfarrol swiped the binder from the counter and calmly walked away. The female store manager told him to put the binder back, but he laughed and ignored her. He was then confronted by the store owner, and that’s when he pulled out a pair of pliers and threatened to stab anyone who got in his way. The commotion caught the attention of two MMA coaches who were just leaving the gym located in the same strip mall; they applied a takedown and submission combo to hold Manfarrol until police officers arrived. The coaches explained that they are customers of the store, which specializes in board and tabletop games such as Warhammer 40K.

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September 18 – Florida Man Told Police Officers: “Call Me Mr. Monopoly”

A 33-year-old Florida man from Pinellas County claimed that his name was “Mr. Monopoly” when he was arrested by officers from the St. Petersburg Police Department, and he also said his birth date was 4/20/1969. For providing this colorful description of himself, Ryan Howard was charged with criminal mischief, obstruction of a police investigation, and resisting arrest in addition to the second-degree misdemeanor he should have been originally charged with.

According to a report published by Fox 35 Orlando, Howard had been spotted in the Skyway Marina District spray painting on a concrete sound barrier. He was caught by officers who went to the spot after getting reports from drivers about a graffiti artist dangerously spraying close to traffic. In the beginning, Howard applied the usual Florida man strategy of not saying anything; nonetheless, he followed with a comedic routine claiming that he was Mr. Monopoly, the tuxedoed character that appears on the box art of the classic board game.

When asked about his birthdate, Howard said he was born in 1969, specifically on the informal Cannabis Day celebrated by stoners around the world on April 20. Eventually, Howard handed his driver’s license instead of a “Get Out Of Jail Free” card, and he was taken to the Pinellas County Jail where he smiled for his mugshot and was later released on a $1,000 bond.

It should be noted that on the Florida section of the Bombing Science graffiti forums, there are photos of stencils featuring Mr. Monopoly from the game on various St. Petersburg spots, so there is a chance Howard was providing his artist tag. That particular stencil has been famously used by legendary street artists such as Shepard Fairey and Banksy.