Legendary Sportscaster Arrested for Making Florida Sign Less Racist

Illustration for article titled Legendary Sportscaster Arrested for Making Florida Sign Less Racist
Image: Collier County Sheriff’s Office

Warner Wolf, an 81-year-old sportscaster who announced baseball, football, and the Olympics for ABC in the 1970s and popularized the phrase “Let’s go to the video tape” removed the word “Plantation” from a sign in his gated community, Classics Plantation Estates, after criticizing the neighborhood’s name for being racist.


Wolf was arrested after Naples, Florida police went to the video tape (you see how that couldn’t be avoided) and saw him using a tool to remove the letters spelling “Plantation.”

This story gets better, according to Buzzfeed News. Wolf has been a longtime critic of having the word in the neighborhood’s name, frequently objecting at community meetings. A witness reported seeing Wolf standing in a fountain near the offensive sign on November 30 removing the letters. Then, on December 13, Wolf drove up to the security gate and handed off the purloined letters to a security guard “with instructions to give the broken letters to the property manager.”

Wolf turned himself in to authorities on February 7 and was charged with criminal mischief. He was released on a $5,000 bond.

Florida is often in the news for all the wrong reasons—looking at you, face licking city commissioner—but this is a little bit of all right.


Mia Thompson

If you look at his old clips, you’ll see he stood up for decency and civility throughout his career. I remember specifically his coverage of a John McEnroe temper tantrum. Mr. Wolf was not amused. He’s a good man, and he’s aging well.