When Brazilian second-division sides Santa Cruz and Parana faced off in Recife in 2014, things began unraveling off the pitch, ending with a man being killed by a toilet.
Think the most bizarre fan death story you’ve heard. Nothing tops this insane occurrence. Inside the lines, the teams played to a 1-1 tie. In the stands, however, good-natured partisanship quickly devolved into total mayhem.
40 fans were arrested at Arruda Stadium where three toilets were ripped from the floor and hurled out of the stadium. Unfortunately for 26-year-old Paulo Ricardo Gomes da Silva, the flying porcelain struck him from above, crushing his skull and killing him instantly.
“The toilet was thrown from the stands and hit him full on,” police captain Wilson Queiroz told Globesporte. “The victim was with someone at the time but everyone fled the scene after the incident.”
Reports suggest da Silva was embroiled in an argument with supporters of the opposing side when the toilet made its crash landing. The friends da Silva was with scurried off, leaving their compatriot dead on the street surrounded by shards of porcelain.
The death by toilet continued the unfortunate trend of fan violence in Brazil in 2014. A riot at Atletico Paranaense and Vasco da Gama match inspired an official response from FIFA.
No one was ever charged with hurling the commode, and it was most certainly a group effort. It’s not difficult to imagine the overflowing of boozed up stupidity that could compel a group of individuals to rip out a frigging toilet.
It’s more difficult, however, to comprehend how throwing a toilet at an assembled crowd could result in anything good. At best, no one would have been hit by the toilet itself and fans would be left dodging the porcelain shrapnel. At worst, you hit some poor bastard in the head and kill him.
But hey, standing around a riot expecting the situation to improve isn’t good policy. And, again, reports suggest da Silva wasn’t exactly a bystander to the mayhem. However, no man deserves death by idiocy.
And of course, for our five-year old selves, there’s humor in a toilet being used as a murder weapon. But there shouldn’t be. Da Silva’s death is just as sad, unfortunate, and senseless as it would have been had he been run down by a drunk driver.
His mother, Joelma, told local radio: “They killed my son and me too – I would not wish the pain I am suffering today on anybody.”
Indeed. And when the route of that suffering is human beings acting like morons, well, that’s almost worse than a murder carried out with malice and forethought.