by BILL NOVAK | The Capital Times | firstname.lastname@example.org | Posted: Friday, September 10, 2010 10:40 am
Don't mess with Bongo Jesus.
The street musician apparently didn't appreciate others criticizing his guitar playing, as he allegedly committed a string of offenses on State Street Thursday afternoon.
Madison police reported that he banged his guitar over another man's head, tackled the same man, slammed a college student into a wall and wrestled with a police sergeant before being stunned by a Taser and hauled off to jail.
The musical critique and subsequent mayhem happened at about 1:45 p.m. Thursday along State Street, police said.
The guitar player is Brandin Hochstrasser, better known as "Bongo Jesus", 31, no permanent address. He was tentatively charged with battery, battery to a police officer, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.
"The dispute started over some questionable guitar playing," said police spokesman Joel DeSpain.
A 54-year-old man with no permanent address, hanging out with others in the 500 block of State Street, evidently decided he was not going to keep his thoughts about the guitar playing to himself.
"He went over to 'Bongo Jesus' and provided some sort of critique which did not sit well," DeSpain said.
Heated words were exchanged, and then the disagreement escalated.
"When police were called, we were advised that the musician was hitting the victim over the head with the guitar," DeSpain said.
After the two men were separated, Hochstrasser allegedly charged at the victim, barreling into him from behind.
"It sent the victim sprawling to the pavement," DeSpain said.
"The victim told a responding officer he thought his hip was broken."
A witness to the fight rode his bike up to a 65-year-old police sergeant who was on routine foot patrol, telling the sergeant of the fight while pointing out the suspect.
"The suspect was now walking toward the sergeant while screaming at passersby," DeSpain said.
The sergeant watched as Bongo Jesus allegedly slammed a college-aged student into the wall of a business.
"The sergeant moved in to make an arrest of the suspect who now was completely out of control," DeSpain said.
The suspect fought with the sergeant, both ending up on the floor of a State Street business, with Bongo allegedly punching and kicking at the sergeant.
After he was Tasered and arrested, Bongo continued to yell expletives at officers and passersby.
"At one point, he said the victim who commented about his guitar playing had been his friend," DeSpain said, "His friend up until the time he made the comment about the guitar playing."
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