Kevin Hayes takes the rap for Gritty!

Free Gritty!

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In case you missed the news earlier this week, Philadelphia Flyers mascot Gritty is being investigated by Philly police for an alleged assault on a teenage boy.

Excuse me!?!

According to a report from Christian Hetrick of the Philadelphia Inquirer, 13 year old Brandon Greenwell was attacked by Gritty during a game this past November at the Flyers’ home rink Wells Fargo Centre.

Check it out:

In Greenwell’s telling, Brandon playfully patted the mascot on the head after the photo was taken. As Brandon walked away, Gritty got out of his chair, “took a running start,” and “punched my son as hard as he could,” Greenwell said Wednesday.

What the f***, Gritty!? I know you’re a mad man and all… but you can’t go around punch kids!? Actually, on second thought, maybe Gritty is the only person (thing?) who actually can get away with punching kids?

More from Hetrick’s article in the Inquirer:

Officials at Comcast Spectacor, the company that owns the Flyers, told Greenwell there is no video footage of the incident because the “cameras in that area of the center are focused on other locations,” according to emails between Greenwell and officials. The company claimed it conducted an investigation that included interviews with Gritty, and “Gritty’s handler,” but couldn’t verify Greenwell’s account.
Greenwell said he took his son to see a chiropractor about a week after the incident. The chiropractor noted that Brandon suffered from mild pain, and diagnosed him with a back bruise, or a “contusion to lower thoracic spine with subluxation,” according to documents from the chiropractor, provided by Greenwell.

Greenwell has reportedly tried to settle the matter with Comcast Spectacor, the corporation that owns the Flyers, to no avail.

“I have investigated your allegations and cannot identify anyone who witnessed the incident as you described it,” wrote Laurie Kleinman, vice president of risk management at Comcast Spectacor, in a Dec. 5 email to Greenwell. “It is unfortunate that you and your son had a bad experience at our Gritty Photo Event. Therefore, we are offering an opportunity to discuss a creative way to restore your son’s love of the Philadelphia Flyers.”

Now, Greenwell has involved the authorities. The alleged incident is now being investigated by South Detectives Division. “The investigation is active and on-going,” police said. No need though, says Flyers forward Kevin Hayes. Why? Hayes has stepped forward and he's taking the rap for Gritty.

Check it out:

Free Gritty!