Over the history of professional wrestling, there have been many urban legends and stories of folklore that have been said; and while some of those have been good, funny and amusing, others have been bad, tragic and downright illegal.
Yes, the talents that are a part of the world of wrestling are usually displayed as violent, unpredictable and crazy, amongst others. However, a majority of them don’t let that stigma go passed what the fans see inside of the squared circle.
Yet at the same time, there are also many of those wrestlers that truly are as legitimately crazy and out of control outside of the ring as they are inside of it; which only means that acts against the law aren’t exactly out of the realm of possibility for the men and women.
Sure, wrestlers have had their fare share of run ins with police, drug and alcohol abuse and other negative chargers. However, one of the most inexcusable acts that some of these wrestlers have been involved in have to do with probably the worst crime that one can commit: homicide.
While the act of homicide is an unfortunate circumstance that happens in all walks of life, it always hits home even harder when it involves someone who is in the limelight – and since wrestlers perform in front of thousands of people every night, the limelight is something that they’re used to.
As you will read throughout the countdown, not everyone mentioned below did the heinous acts on purpose, or were even acquitted before they were sent to jail; however, here are 10 stories about wrestlers being accused of homicide at some point in their lives.
10 Jimmy Snuka
To begin the countdown, we must start with the basis of this list and the man who has been in the news most recently for this subject, Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka. As it has come to life in recent weeks, a Pennsylvania District Attorny had resumed the case of the death of his former girlfriend Nancy Argentino, and it has resulted in justice finally being served. Back in 1983, after a WWE taping, Snuka and Argentino went back to a Pennsylvania hotel. Later in the evening, Snuka placed a call to an ambulance, saying his girlfriend was not responsive. After she was taken to a local hospital, Argentino died shortly thereafter.
9 Ox Baker
When wrestling legend Ox Baker passed just shy of a year ago, some of the things circulated amongst the Internet were both his wild facial hairstyles and backstage stories. However, one of those backstage stories stood out more than others did. According to an urban legend, Baker killed not one, but two wrestlers on separate occasions due to his finishing maneuver, the Heart Punch.
8 Brian McGhee
Although most people won't know Brian McGhee by name, he signed a WWE developmental contract in 2010 and worked with the company up until 2012. Known under aliases such as D.T. Porter, The Future and Donovan Ruddick, his burly build and athletic frame made him a hopeful for the main roster some day. Unfortunately, McGhee isn’t known for his professional wrestling career; instead, he is known for murder.
7 Akitoshi Saito
Though the death in this case wasn’t a fault of Japanese wrestling mainstay Akitoshi Saito, a move he did resulted in Mitsuharu Misawa’s unfortunate passing. In June of 2009, with the two men wrestling in a tag team match for the GHC Tag Team Championships, Saito performed a backdrop on Misawa, which resulted in a very bad spinal injury – so bad, that Misawa died later that night in a local hospital.
6 Jose Gonzalez
In what is one of the most told stories throughout professional wrestling history, number six will the Jose Gonzalez and Bruiser Brody murder incident. As the story goes, Gonzalez asked Brody to enter the shower to talk business, and after a brief discussion, screams could be heard from the shower. As it has been reported on multiple accounts, wrestler Tony Atlas said he saw Gonzalez holding a knife while Brody was bent over holding his stomach.
5 The Great Khali
4 Verne Gagne
3 New Jack
If you don’t know who New Jack is, take the time out to go look up some of his old matches on Youtube. The ECW alumnus was known for his devastating hardcore matches while also working a stiff and aggressive style against any opponents he squared off with. However, during an ECW live event back in 1996, New Jack took it a little too far. While in Massachusetts, promoter Paul Heyman was looking for a replacement in a tag team match. After lying about his age to do so, a 17-year-old “wrestler” known as Mass Transit was able to get onto the card.
2 Scott Hall
1 Chris Benoit
Rounding out the list is the most notorious incident involving a professional wrestler in the history of the business: Chris Benoit’s double murder and suicide in 2007. While not only still an active wrestler but also having an ECW Championship match scheduled at the Vengeance pay-per-view that Sunday, Benoit was missing in action over the weekend events. When word circulated that he had passed away, Vince McMahon held a Raw show in memory of Benoit; however, unlike the Owen Hart and Eddie Guerrero memorial episodes, Benoit’s had an odd feel to it – and just days later, it was known why.
Over the weekend mentioned above, Benoit went on a tragic rampage in which he first murdered his wife on Friday, his son on Saturday and, finally, killed himself on Sunday. While there is still a debate as to what the cause of the events was, the acts alone were enough to erase all references from Chris Benoit in published books, magazines and other materials since the incident.
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