Hockey Fan Faces Arson Charges After Arena Stunt

Cops say she tried to burn giant rival flag
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 30, 2015 5:01 PM CDT
Hockey Fan Faces Arson Charges After Arena Stunt
Lena Sinishtaj.   (Hillsborough County Jail)

(Newser) – There but for the grace of God—and the possession of a lighter—go many a die-hard sports fan: As the Tampa Bay Lightning took on the Detroit Red Wings in Game 7 at home last night, the hometown fans started passing around a 20-by-30-foot Lightning flag, which apparently struck one Red Wings fan all wrong and, of course, it's never a party in Florida until arson charges result. As the Tampa Tribune reports, cops say 35-year-old Lena Sinishtaj, who lives in a Detroit suburb, is charged with first-degree arson of an occupied structure after she held a lighter up to the flag and set it on fire.

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There were about 200 people under the flag at the time, notes WXYZ. The evening rapidly went downhill from there for Sinishtaj: She didn't cause much damage, she didn't see the game, her team lost, and she was held without bond. For this reason, a Lightning rep says the team limits ticket sales to those with Florida ZIP codes, to "preserve a hometown environment for our fans." Alas, notes the Toronto Sun, "weird things happen in Florida." (Read more Tampa Bay Lightning stories.)

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