GQ's Real-Life Superhero Arrested, Unmasked

'Phoenix Jones' apparently pepper sprayed people he thought were fighting

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Remember GQ's excellent August investigation into the eccentric world of real people who acted like superheroes? It featured a leading man codenamed as Phoenix Jones, a Seattle-based vigilante who traveled around in a bullet proof vest and plastic-looking black and yellow outfit trying mainly to stop street-fights from happening. He was pictured in GQ holding an umbrella for a grateful elderly woman. Well, if you've been wondering what's happened to Jones since that moment of fame, it's this: he's been arrested and subsequently unmasked.

As the Associated Press reported, the vigilante--with a sidekick named "Ghost" and a filmmaker in tow--rushed headlong into a group of people that, it seems, he thought were in a fight. This video shows Phoenix Jones rushing into the group to do something, and pulling what looks like a canister of pepper spray. Seattle police were not amused. "Just because he's dressed up in costume, it doesn't mean he's in special consideration or above the law. You can't go around pepper spraying people because you think they are fighting," said a Seattle police spokesperson to the AP. Jones was arrested and, according to the police report obtained by The Smoking Gun, unmasked the guy in a mask's real name as Benjamin Francis.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.