Riverside Wrestlemania

Tangled lines lead to a fistfight at an Anchorage fishery

Field & Stream Online Editors

What started out as just another day of fishing on a salmon stream turned into an old fashioned barroom brawl when a 16 year-old angler punched a man more than three times his age.

According to the Anchorage Daily News, Wednesday's fight broke out after the teen took a position on the bank behind an older man. The teen was asked to move several times by other anglers who believed he was too close, but he stayed put and tangled his line with the 54-year-old fisherman in front of him. When the older man had had enough, he clipped the teen's line and that's when tempers flared. "The 16-year-old became angry and began to argue," Anchorage police spokesman Ron McGee told the Daily News. "The boy punched [BRACKET "the older man"] in the face. He got him into a bear hug, and with his back to the water, the boy pulled the man in."

Other fishermen soon recognized that the older man could not swim, so they pulled him out of the water and said he appeared to be injured and dazed. Police cited the teen for disorderly conduct and fishing without a license. The older man was also ticketed for disorderly conduct because police said he "helped the fight continue."

The fight took place at Ship Creek--one of the most popular urban fishing spots in Anchorage--and caught the attention of several onlookers, including local resident Al Perkins who said he's been fishing at the spot since he was 7 years old and has seen several fights in that time. "To me, they both acted like a bunch of little kids," he told the Daily News.