Monday 21 April 2014

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high school athletes: beware of the ‘piggyback bandit’


Sherwin Shayegan, 28, pictured above in a  basketball jersey, in a hallway at Century High School in Bismarck, N.D., has been banned from schools in North Dakota, Minnesota, Montana, Washington and Oregon for his bizarre behavior.

Dubbed the “Piggyback Bandit”, Shayegan has crashed school sporting events in at least five states and asked athletes to give him piggyback rides. Wearing the school’s athletic attire, he shows up at games and acts like a volunteer, helping getting players drinks during game breaks and even offering players rubdowns.

“He makes himself appear as if he’s limited or handicapped. I think he plays an empathy card, so to speak,” Jim Haussler, activities director for the Bismarck, N.D., public schools, told The Associated Press. “It’s a little creepy. Well, a lot creepy is more like it.”

“What’s disturbing to me is that he is jumping on our young athletes, he is 240 pounds, and he can hurt someone,” Mark Beckman, head of the Montana High School Sports Association, told the AP.

While he seems to gravitate toward basketball games, he has also been seen lurking at hockey, soccer and football games.  In October, he was arrested in Helena Montana and charged with assault for hoisting himself onto two soccer players.

That was not his encounter with the law.  He has more than a dozen convictions in Washington for charges that include trespassing, criminal impersonation, resisting arrest and drug possession.

check out the the original article from New York Daily News, written by Philip Caulfield

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