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Incident Involving A MAGA Hat, A Sword, A Pirate Costume And A Roller Rink Ends Poorly For All Involved

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In case you had any doubts that we are living in the dumbest timeline, allow me to direct your attention to the fact that a man was arrested yesterday in San Francisco for attacking another man with a sword outside of a roller rink called the Church of 8 Wheels, after that man swatted off his Make America Great Again hat.

It's just... it's so, so many stupid things at once. It's like the news item equivalent of a bologna cake.

According to witnesses, the suspect had posted himself outside a roller rink for several hours, wearing a MAGA hat and a pirate costume, drinking beer, threatening people walking in and out of said roller rink and screaming homophobic slurs. As one does. At some point, he crossed paths with 27-year-old Gabriel Gaucin, who knocked the MAGA hat off his head as he was leaving the roller rink, at which point the suspect attacked him with a sword, partially severing his hand. The assailant then ran down the block, pursued by the hat swatter and his bleeding hand.


Leor Bergland, 30, was identified as the assailant after security guards found the sword wrapped in a red plaid vest in some nearby garbage cans and matched his fingerprint to a beer bottle the suspect had been seen drinking from at the scene. Berland claims he is innocent and that he was home at the time of the incident, telling the court "What do you have on me, nothing 'cause I didn't do it," and telling his lawyer "I can defend myself!" as said lawyer tried to argue that he was simply "reacting" to having his hat swatted off. With a sword.

Prosecutors disagree, noting that attempting to cut someone's hand off with a sword is an outsized response to that person swatting your hat off.

Bergland is being charged with attempted murder, mayhem, and weapons and assault charges, and his bail set at one million dollars -- which is a whole lot of money for someone who apparently lives at a halfway-house-type-place for formerly homeless people.

I don't know. Maybe my heart is a little too bleedy, or I'm just not jaded enough yet, but it seems like an insanity defense might be more appropriate here? I'm just not sure that people stand outside of roller rinks screaming homophobic slurs in pirate costumes paired with MAGA hats and swords when they have all of their faculties together.

[San Francisco Chronicle]

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Robyn Pennacchia

Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Previously, she was a Senior Staff Writer at Death & Taxes, and Assistant Editor at The Frisky (RIP). Currently, she writes for Wonkette, Friendly Atheist, Quartz and other sites. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse

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