Skip to main content

75-year-old father jailed for three days after Pokémon Go punch-up in a lake

While his son gets a fine for provoking the fight.

Playing Pokémon Go on phone close-up
Image credit: Stanisic Vladimir -

A 75-year-old man and his son were found guilty of third-degree assault earlier this week by a jury in St. Louis, Missouri.

The reason for the tussle? Pokémon Go.

The incident took place in 2018 at Kirkwood Park, more specifically Walter Lake, when Robert Matteuzzi was 71 and his son, Angelo, was 31.

A new Ghost-type Pokémon appeared in Paldea!Watch on YouTube

As reported by St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the two men were out playing Pokémon Go when they got into a disagreement with the victim, identified only by their in-game name "Sammy the Bull", over a gym as they were on opposing teams.

Sammy the Bull testified the physical fight was started by Matteuzzi Jr., who began punching him, which caused the pair of them to fall into the lake. The distance they fell was approximately five feet (or 1.5 metres if you prefer metric). Matteuzzi Sr. jumped in after them to join the fray.

Footage of the incident, filmed by a bystander, was shown to the jury. Both Matteuzzis were seen "repeatedly punching the victim" and holding him down in the water. The fight was eventually broken apart by bystanders but the victim suffered heavy injuries.

When testifying, Robert Matteuzzi admitted to holding the victim's head underwater. "I just wanted to dunk him," he said. When asked by prosecutors on why he got physically involved with the fight, he said "when you're 71 and you get punched in the head, you don't know what you're doing". Angelo Matteuzzi said he left the altercation with a swollen fist and missing teeth, in his testimony.

The jury found the father and son guilty of the charges against them, and recommended both men receive fines. Robert Matteuzzi was also recommended three days in jail.

Read this next