I thought surfers were supposed to be mellow and laid-back almost to the point of unconsciousness - like Matthew McConaughey, but more stoned. Well, pro surfer Chris Ward seems to break the mold; he’s allegedly more like the pro surfing version of Pacman Jones. Actually, scratch that: even Jones hasn’t been accused of what the LOS ANGELES TIMES reports about today.
Ward - ranked No. 32 in the world - is competing in an event in Australia this weekend, but might have a lot more on his mind. An August trial date has been set in Mammoth, CA, over charges he punched three women, knocking one unconscious, during a brawl at a bar in January. The women had allegedly intervened when Ward threatened another woman with a “chunk of ice.”
But despite all this, he’s still being allowed to compete on tour. If he was an NFL player, how far would Roger Goodell have him buried? Sure, there’s innocence until proven guilty, but if an account in SURFER MAGAZINE by the manager at the Whiskey Creek Bar is to be believed, things don’t look good for Ward:
According to Whiskey Creek’s bar manager, Jake Wallace, the event was “really disturbing.” Wallace followed by stating, “I’ve seen a lot fights working here, but nothing like this.”
And trust me, if it’s a bad fight for Mammoth, it’s a really, really bad fight. Although you’ll be happy to note that there was some instant justice apparently inflicted on Ward: Police arriving at the scene found Ward knocked out cold outside of the bar, apparently beaten by a group of unknown male attackers. Who would have thought that (allegedly) beating up three women would get your butt kicked?
Of course, there are two sides to the story: according to Ward, he’s actually the victim in this case:
“This whole event has gotten out of hand. I’ve never hit a woman. I was jumped by a bunch of people, and this has become a big misunderstanding. I should be the one pressing charges.”
Clearly things did get “out of hand,” and there has been some rumors online that the problems began when a woman starting wearing Ward’s jacket after he left it on a seat while he was using the restroom. But even still: a drunk woman tries to take your jacket? Call the bouncer over and get it straightened out. There’s no excuse for throwing punches at women, period.