UPDATE: Gorilla at Bike Week sparks strong reaction

Sandusky police chief, the Bike Week organizer, the NAACP and others speak out about man who attended festivities Thursday dressed in gorilla costume with offensive sign and appendage
Courtney Astolfi
Jun 6, 2014


UPDATE 5:30 p.m. — Sandusky attorney Geoffrey Oglesby called the protest distasteful and ignorant, but protected free speech.

"I don't see it as racist necessarily; he just doesn't like the president," Oglesby said. "It's free speech against a lame-duck president. It's wasted free speech speech. It's kind of pitiful."

UPDATE 5 p.m. — The president of the Sandusky NAACP said he's received more calls and inquiries about the protester than any other recent issue, and he was disappointed in the man's protest.

"In 2014, this is happening now? You would think this would be gone. It goes beyond making fun of Obama. He's making fun of his race suggesting suggesting the president is the son of an animal," Jim Jackson said. 

"What that individual is doing is dangerous."

UPDATE from 3:40 p.m. — Sandusky police Chief John Orzech said there is a plan of action should the man return in the costume.

Sandusky officials conferred this afternoon to determine what, if any action could be taken, Sandusky police Chief John Orzech said just now in an interview with the Register. 

"We've had multiple complaints this afternoon. We've been discussing it with the law department and researching it all afternoon and we have a plan in place if the individual shows. I can't share our operational plan, but the issue will be addressed it if it happens again," Orzech said. 

Orzech said officials have to tread lightly in this situation, as they cannot infringe on the individual's constitutional right to free speech. However, that is not to say it will not be taken care of swiftly if the man returns to the festivities on Friday or Saturday.

"If he was just in a gorilla suit and doing it, we would be limited in what we could do, but if he's there with an enhancement, so to speak, there's some other issues we can address," Orzech said. 

"We dont want any violence or any of our local youth to react to someone like that. We're trying to get that (taken care of) so there isn't any violence," Orzech said. 

Orzech spoke with Sandusky NAACP President Jim Jackson and Sandusky law director Don Icsman today regarding the issue. 

Ohio Bike Week organizer Steve Ernst stressed this person was not hired or affiliated with Ohio Bike Week and his team in anyway.

He can certainly understand why people would be upset about the person and the message, however.

"But you can't stop people from being idiots," Ernst said.

"We want to handle this responsibly but it is a free speech issue," Ernst said.

If the matter were to become a safety issue event organizers may consider a designated free speech zone as is done at other events, he said.

Original Post: The man, who has not been identified, was wearing a gorilla suit, a gold necklace and a baseball cap. 

The costume also had an exposed dildo protruding from the genital area.

He also was carrying a sign that stated: "Obama's real daddy."

The Register is pursuing more information about the man, his demonstration and whether he will be allowed to return today.

Check back here for updates as they become available. 



But it would be ok if it was about George Bush.


The guy is obviously an idiotic a-hole.
Also, if it was about George Bush he would have been wearing an Alfred E. Neuman costume.

Sal Dali

and he would have had someone throwing shoes at him...lol. My favorite Bush Jr. clip of all time! Whoever it was is an idiot and should have kept his or her racist a$$ away from the festivities. When people like this show up and do this crap, it reflects negatively on every biker attending and most of those attending probably know nothing about this. Now the NAACP is involved and it could end up negatively for the thousands of others who were not a part of his/her ignorance. What a jerk.


And your calling others idiotic...

Sal Dali

A little sensitive aren't you? Get over yourself already. Sounds like you might have a guerrilla suit in your closet.

JT Adams St

Yes, it would be OK if it was about Bush because it wouldn't be blatantly racist.


The 1st amendment of the Constitution guarantees free speech, it does not say "if it doesn't offend you". Freedom is never free, but to deny free speech, no matter how offensive, is a right that we must defend. While I find his protest offensive, as an American, I will defend his right to speak.


PUBLIC PORNOGRAPHY presented to children or in their presence is NOT protected by the FIRST AMENDMENT.

The DILDO is grounds for arrest.... if we had a decent police department.
And the SR should have called the cops instead of becoming complicit in the offense. Let's arrest Matt Westerhold for promoting pornography to children.


Looks like they may have arrested the guy on public intoxication and harassment by an inmate. https://jail.eriecounty.oh.gov:8...


sure it would be ok if it was Bush or ANY OTHER President
but just do not do ANYTHING, ANYTHING to this POS king


I guess if we hung Bush in effigy it would be OK. Screw you NAACP, Obama is disrespected and most people HATE him. I know I do.


Change your name to vinegar. You are one hateful person.

From the Grave

I think it was Clarence Beeks




clayton bigsby?

UNregisturd's picture

Oh brother! Does anyone ever THINK about what they say or do anymore? No, Wjones44, it would not be ok if someone portrayed GW's daddy as a black gorilla because everyone knows HIS daddy was a white gorilla! jeeeez REALLY? Idiots! Yes this idiot is entitled to his opinion of O, but this idiot should surely have known that this display would incite discord, & even possibly violence. Take a cue from Sal Dali & try to imagine how this could have a negative impact on future Bike Week festivities; festivities that, btw, generates much needed revenue for the city, county & state. I could not agree w/Oglesby more, & I don't always! But this was definitely a pitiful waste of free speech! smdh


Why would one persons expression of displeasure with the King end bike week? This PC stuff has got to stop. Obviously enough people saw it as non threatening. Quit being an overvreatve alarmist .


y'all wanted Ricke Vitte fired and prosecuted for showing pornography to a child.

This asphole - and the complicit SR - showed/reported/supported dissemination of pornography to possibly hundreds of children.

Hypocrisy, thy name is Sandusky.


It is inappropriate - and actionable - because of the Dildo. Obscenity in the presence of children is NOT protected by the First Amendment (just as the Supreme Court).

But of course, y'all got your panties in a twist over the gorilla suit.

The cops should have made the arrest immediately on OBSCENITY charges.


Well they didn't now did they ? Your hystrionics are a bit funny.


Alfred's ears however belong to Barry


some people just can't pull off funny and are just offensive.

The Answer Person

Hopefully this will be the last year for this mess anyway.


Yeah because Sandusky doesn't need all that revenue they bring to that town right?

The Answer Person



Sandusky NEEDS all the money Bike Week doesn't bring anyway.

Now Sandusky is branded as racist and a haven for pornography and obscenity and offenses to children (THE DILDO, you jackanapes). Wondering why the Great Protector SR didn't pick up on the obscenity?


If Sandusky is branded anything it's branded as a dying city full of Dem supporting union goons.


What an idiot you are!


If Ricky Vitte had been in the suit showing off the DILDO, the SR would have been up in arms.

How is wearing a DILDO any less "providing pornography to children" than watching porn with a 12-year-old.

Or are there no children at Bike Week?


Give it a break already. Charges wouldn't stick. You're just mad because he took your toy.


Because Vitte is accused of masturbating while he was showing that kid the porn.

There you go again

I thought it was kinda funny.

JMOP's picture

Obama would be deeply offended by the fake gold necklace.


actually it was George Bush in the costume

The Bizness

There is a difference between making a political statement and being racist....this is just racist.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

(sarcasm) Aren't even the most albino of us all actually descended from apes?

(not sarcasm) I agree, Biz, there are much better ways to try to make a political statement. Such is the give and take we have in a free speech society. In the words of Blade from his self-titled movie, "Some mother[tr]uckers are always trying to ice-skate uphill."

The Bizness

I like that quote!

The Big Dog's back

hz, things like this, which are common, make it hard for anyone to take the Repubs seriously.


How do you know it's a Republican? I despise odumbo and I am not a republican. You ignorant liberals politicize everything.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

Maybe this guy is a Republican. Maybe he's just a Troll. Some men just want to watch the world burn or have a grating sense of humor. He hardly speaks for the party but is probably about as effective at getting his message out as them, heh.


Who can prove it wasn't another minority, or a woman? Then would it be racist?

The Bizness

Huh? Of course it would.


Steve Ernst said it best...."But you can't stop people from being idiots,"


I completely agree!!! I'm just surprised by what Oglesby had to say about Obama.

thinkagain's picture

OK, I get how that could be offensive to passersby. But then to put a picture on the website or maybe the paper to offend even more people? Whatever…


maybe he should be in a police uniform pretending to steal girl scout cookies like in 1992.....YUMMY


Dude, that's pretty old, you can't do better than that?

the unsilent majority's picture
the unsilent ma...

Love it!


^^^^^^^ yes^^^^^^


What an idiot. But really..what can he be charged with?


Yes, it's offensive but the gorilla costume and sign is protected speech. On the other hand the dildo...that's a problem and may be the basis for legal sanctions under community obscenity standards.


Kinda like the Nuts hanging off the backs of trucks?

Florence Nightingale

God, I hate those things!



I almost guarantee that's your gorilla. Robert Nelson, aka "Bobblehead"

Pterocarya frax...

What username does he post under on this site?


go to FB, Too Pheatherz. scroll thru the pics


Good call!! Look at "Too Pheatherz" FB and scroll thru the pics and there is the dumb idiot in the suit, smoking! What a lame, sick individual

Little Giant

Pretty sure it was Robert. I saw him carrying some luggage near Market and Warren. He wore an ape costume when he worked at Liberty Tax Service. As a registered sex offender..... I believe the dildo public display would be a violation of his probation.


Be careful, you could be in trouble for implying that. A**hole.


The dildo is the only thing he can be charged for. Even unpopular racist speech is protected. But the bigger issue is the whole concept of bike week. The City invites the most undesirable group of people imaginable into town in the name of tourism and then acts twice as surprised as everyone else when problems occur. What's next? Pedophile week in July? Arsonist week in August? Why not? Their money spends too!


What undesirable group?


Exactly? Who are these undesirable people you speak of? Bikers are good people!

2cents's picture

If you believe in evolution, he would be everybody's daddy. : )

Florence Nightingale

What would be great is if everyone completely ignored him. Deny him whatever attention or reaction he's looking for. Unfortunately, I'm sure there were people high-fiving him - tasteless and classless, no matter what your politics are.


I did, shook his hand too!


It's strange that you want people to know how classless you are.


So you're idea of class is supporting a lying, inept, corrupt, anti American, disrespectful, military hating, self absorbed arrogant, failure? I see.


Obama has made mistakes, but if you truly think the President is all those things you listed then you are truly ignorant. And "you're" is a contraction meaning "you are", by the way.


When you have nothing you go for typos. What's the matter are you "truly" mad you're obama phone doesn't have auto correct?


Oh and I, and 100's of thousands of others believe these things.


WOW !!! That's a lot of ignorant people !!!


No more offensive to some than the women who run around damn near naked


The First Amendment was written not to protect paintings or poetry, but POLITICAL speech. The Founders were particularly concerned that citizens always be able to openly criticize the government after what they'd gone through when they disagreed with King George. Sure, free expression still applies to all forms of speech, but it's ironic that so many people are choosing to be offended by exactly the kind of expression the Founders most wanted to ensure remained free.

I don't care if some disagree. I don't care if some think it's racist or stupid or incendiary or offensive. The guy not only has the right to express his feelings, but the PROTECTED right (that means from the government AND from the rest of us as well) to do so.

I'd also note something that's very conspicuously missing from the Bill of Rights: You do NOT have the right not to be offended!

Pterocarya frax...

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Yes, that does give him protection from the government regulating his speech, and from the statement by Orzech, it certainly appears they are abiding by that.

NO, it does NOT give him protection from "the rest of us" condemning him for it.

And finally, YES, I do have the right to be offended, and criticize him for his behavior.




You're right. Your opinion and your right to express it, including condemning the gorilla's opinions, aren't (and shouldn't be) infringed, either.

As far as the "right" to be offended, well, I don't know whether that's an unalienable right or not since no one outside yourself can control it whether they'd like to or not. What's far more important is whether or not you use that offense to control OTHERS.



The Big Dog's back

sam, do you really think this is political speech?


Yes. The man obviously doesn't much care for Barack Obama. Is his speech eloquent? Nope. Is it offensive? Yep. Is it racist? I'm pretty sure the answer there is yes, too. But is he free to express his opinions, however right or wrong they may be? Absolutely.

If you don't support speech with which you disagree, you don't support free speech.


If I say I don't like president Obama because of a policy, decision, action or even an ideal then that's a political statement.

If I say I don't like president Obama because he's black that's not a political statement, it's just a statement. Not saying it shouldn't be protected under the first amendment, but it shouldn't be categorized under political speech because it's not.

This is just some idiot in a suit expressing his displeasure with someone who physically looks different than him/her


I'd be curious to hear what you find to be "political" about his demonstration

All I see is somebody trying to mock a politician because of his race.


Thank you, in the PC world the crazy libs have created we ate always looking over our shoulders.

looking around

Obviously he aligns himself with the right wing conservatives and typifies what they consider as acceptable. They will probably want to run him for office like Joe the plumber.


Oh great now he has been seen by just a few people at bike week and now the Register puts it out for all to see. I guess this person got what he wanted. good work SR.

WhatUbloginAbout's picture

1ST amendment, Don't like it go live in Nazi Germany, or Russia. The dildo will be the only reason police can make him leave, not the monkey suit. With out the 2ND amendment there is no 1ST amendment. Don't like the 2ND amendment go live in the U.K. Tell the NAACP to do some thing with the black youth ruining the city of Sandusky!!


As reprehensible as the gorilla may be, the cops conspiring with the city's legal department to do an end around of the first amendment should scare the bagebers out of each and every one of us. Geoffrey Oglesby is spot on with his assessment!


I love it. I hopes he returns!


I find it a bit ridiculous that displaying a dildo violates the law in a country where we allow people to make a public display attempting to dehumanize a racial group.

"I don't want our kids to be exposed to sex but a guy dressed in an ape suit pretending to be a black person is perfectly fine"

Pterocarya frax...

Racists in ape suits are people my friend...but not racists with dildos, at least according to Mitt Romney.


HE rang the bell.
You turned and looked.
He wins by default.
Attention gained!
Personally I think it may have been Elsebeth in that costume........

Florence Nightingale

Exactly. Ignore him. Or her?


He probably was playing video games, eating a bowl of lucky charms this morning and decided "hey, I think I'll put Monkey suit on and piss some people off today."

JMOP's picture

Or...it was Friday and he decided not to go into work today, so he called off enjoying this beautiful day outside. He didn't want to get recognized, put on a gorilla suit, and used his gamer tag which is "Obamas Real Daddy". Case solved.


Asking "dandy" don Iscman about the law, is like asking an absolute fool about anything! I can't stomach Obama but even I think this crosses the line


Ever been to Sturgis? Just about anything goes on , the more shocking , the better, you know that at the start.


He's had a previous conviction for Gross Sexual Imposition. I wonder if it violates probation terms if there were any imposed?


Great quote from Steve Ernst:

"But you can't stop people from being idiots," Ernst said.

REALLY bad idea:
"If the matter were to become a safety issue event organizers may consider a designated free speech zone as is done at other events, he said."

Keep the free speech zones to the worthless Democrat & Republican presidential conventions, leave Bike Week alone.


Hmm Violate our countries free speech ya say... Well im sure there's some way around it, I mean they're taking our guns from us when we have the right to bare arms. Land of the free my azz

Pterocarya frax...

Who is taking your guns?

The Big Dog's back

lunkhead, with your mentality, you shouldn't have a gun.

Sal Dali

The Gun Control Act of 1968 prohibits certain people from possessing firearms; state restrictions were challenged and decided in favor of the defendant (see District of Columbia v. Heller @ http://www.oyez.org/cases/2000-2...). Background checks are a hella idea and unless a person has some serious crazy in their past or present to hide these checks shouldn't be a concern.

nightroller's picture

Pretty neat, I got a laugh out of it .....


He could not be arrested, but it certainly would have been fine to have him escorted off the premises. I'm sure that "inciting" the public or something along those lines would be proper cause for his removal. I'm no fan of Obama, but I definitely do not support racist actions.

The Big Dog's back

Not to worry. 3 months from now the right wingnuts will deny it ever happened, just like they did after the 2008 election.


Obama and a dildo, I can totally see it.....I am all for it


Shut up bridge, watch your own backyard you narc, I hate narcs too.


It looks like the Gorilla is posting on the SR tonight.


If all of you self righteous fools remember the left wing did some horrible things to and with the image of Bush. Tough sh**.


I thought I saw it all...

William Jeffers...

That's my ex-wife, and it ain't a costume.


Can't be! It has to be my first girlfriend! Has to be!!!!!!!!!!


People called the NAACP?????? An organization STARTED BY REPUBLICANS? Why didn't they call the Democrats in Congress that started and were members of the KKK?


I just have a question. Is it racist when he jumps up and down and screams and yells at all the passing cars on Perkins Ave? He is a simple character that a local used car lot uses to try and get attention to their car lot. Wouldn't it be great if he went back downtown tonight, and the police took his mask off and found out it's a "black" person? Also what if Obamas real daddy shows up again but this time without the "dildo"? What then could the police do? If someone were to put on a donkey suit and walk around with a sign that reads Bush's real daddy, would that be racist? Do you really think the NAACP would step in? Hell no they wouldn't. The NAACP, creates racist turmoil, just so they can "think" that they are still relevant. They are just as worthless as this gorillas son... If you look at something and think it's racist, you too, are probably a racist



Thanks for the first intelligent, logical post.

Absolutely correct on all points.

JT Adams St

It would be racist if he jumped and down on Perkins Avenue wearing a gorilla suit while wearing a name tag saying "Clarence Thomas."

Also, someone with German ancestry would probably not be offended if you called them a "gook", while someone from Asia would have every right to be offended. As far as I know, there's no racial connotation to calling someone a donkey, or telling them that they are the son of a donkey. So, no, nobody would think it was racist if someone dressed up as a donkey and wore a sign reading "Bush's real daddy."


what is another name for a donkey? Answer= JT Adams St

Florence Nightingale

Exactly, JT.


Why isn't anyone more concerned about the dildo? This form of display isn't acceptable, just think of all the kids who see that and think its funny, diminishing even more the little morality left in this world.


Oh my, you must never in the future take a child to the zoo. Don't you know all those pervert animals are running around with NO CLOTHES ON! If you have this mindset we M U S T enact provisions that A L L creatures big or small be made to wear loin cloths as to no offend you! Yea that will work nicely.


Why isn't anyone more concerned about the dildo? This form of display isn't acceptable, just think of all the kids who see that and think its funny, diminishing even more the little morality left in this world.


The sinister dog owners who parade their male dogs around their neighborhood that will hike their leg up and show their goods to anyone foolish enough to look! We need change NOW.


The person that many suspect is wearing the Gorilla Suit and brandishing the dildo has a previous conviction for a sexual offense. (go to page 2 of these comments and look for the posts) Is this a violation of a status as a sexual offender?


"that many SUSPECT". Has it been proven who is in the suit? Maybe the man let someone borrow his costume? Maybe someone else has one like it. You can buy them anywhere. Are sex offenders not allowed to own dildos?


I asked the question. I'm wondering if an obscenity or public indecency charge might be a violation of his status as a registered sexual offender. I guess a sexual offender can own a dildo, but I'm wondering if taking the device to a public event is public indecency?


The person that was referenced, in previous comments, as being Obamas real daddy, is currently incarcerated at the Erie County Jail.


Take a real good look at this offensive piece of work and you will see that there is a really large piece of the puzzle missing. On facebook you can see the whole kit and kaboodle. Not only is this not funny the picture is lewd and very distasteful. Typical and funny well I guess if you are in tune with this sort of nonsense. This was a one man circus where one individual played the role of clown and beast! What a ridiculous waste.... Can't wait till next year to see what else this traveling circus act will bring to town. SMH!


Everyone knows Obama's dad was a communist, Which to me is way more offensive than some idiot in a gorilla costume.


Was that you Flash?


Lmfao. Funny as he!! to me. Take a joke people. The president SUCKS !


If I had to guess it was either The Reverend Al Sharpton or Jessie Jackson in the costum. They enjoy keeping whites and blacks against each other. Very poor taste. I hope they find this idiot and tie him/her to a tree the rest of the party so everyone black and white can just walk by and tell their kids this is what we do to racist idiots in our town.


Is it true there will be numerous DUI checkpoints coming out of downtown tomorrow night?


I'm sure there will be. There have been many "unofficial" checkpoints all week. Don't chance it. It's not worth it. The scanner has been going non-stop with motorcycle accidents all night. I can't remember a bike week with this many accidents, and its only Friday, and not even midnight yet.

Julie R.

This ignorant low I.Q. moron trash just got his or her five minutes of fame. Probably waited all year for it.


For everyone who seems to think that people were appalled by this man's act. I can assure you that I have seen many more pictures of this event than you have. The people present seemed to think it was quite funny, most were laughing, a few looked uncomfortable, but the biker crowd enjoyed it. What hasn't been mentioned is how many of the female bystanders went up to the gorilla and performed lewd acts with it, posing for pictures. This is how that crowd behaves in our town square. They all need to go rent the fairgrounds and make it adult only. I do find it interesting that the fellow they keep mentioning was booked into jail on June 6th. As vulgar and disgusting as he was, these filthy bikers enjoyed it and we all have to tolerate them swine because they spend oh so much money here (having 20 of them crash in a 2 bedroom condo), I can not imagine that he broke any laws (maybe Lewd conduct). It is nice that the Sandusky Police can arrest a man for this but let DJs go for years with shootings and crime.


Wow aren't you a piece if work, this event is not billed for children, take your kids to Cedar Point. These are bikers, learn some tolerance.


Funny you preaching tolerance. Hypocrite.


What am I intolerant of? Not agreeing with you? Thinking the POTUS is all of those "things" I mentioned? That's an opinion, it infringes on you in no way.


You are correct! It is your opinion that you are rightly entitled to but it is not based on facts so you are really equal to the gorilla as far as your voice is concerned. No, it does not infringe on anyone either but an intelligent post from you is overdue! Long overdue!


How does someone not liking bike week infringe upon you? See, it goes both ways. You brought up tolerance but talk out of both sides of your mouth. You just want tolerance for the things you like, but I hate to break it to you, other people's opinions are every bit as valid as yours, even those who like the President or think this gorilla guy is racist.


Everybody keeps saying "freedom of speech," but tell me why I heard that the police made someone turn their t-shirt inside out at bike week because it said "F the police?" That's freedom of speech also isn't it? So why would the police be offended by a t-shirt that expresses someone's freedom of speech because it represents that persons personal thoughts about the police, but they refuse to do anything about this clown blatantly disrespecting our country's President? The problem that most people are failing to realize, is that the person who was wearing this gorilla suit, and disrespecting our President, was also wearing a foot long DILDO on the outside of his costume, in public, while there were children in the same area as him! I was down at bike week and one of my friends was told that some of the police were even down there taking pictures with the person in the suit! I'm not saying that's true because I wasn't there to see it, and that's hearsay, but if it is true, all I can say is, it wouldn't surprise me! There is photo evidence of this guy wearing the DILDO on the outside of his costume, in public, so I don't understand why something can't be done to him, even if it's public indecency!


Wearing a dildo is not public indecency, leaving yourself hanging out is. If you remember people HUNG BUSH. Oh by the way that garbage is NOT my President.


Who is your President? Wearing a dildo is indecent. This is just not the place for this!


You elected him, I didn't. I knew what he was the minute he opened his mouth. Unfortunately the BS he does affects me, but my president? Nah.


How have you been negatively effected sugar? How? America elected him. I am only one person. How can you know anyone the "minute" they open their mouth?



What does the dildo have to do with gorillas or Obama? Maybe if you ignore him, he will go away.


Unfortunately, there is as much of a chance that ignoring him will send the message to him that his obscene conduct is acceptable.


Hey all you naacp folks, oh and what does that stand for ? Truth hurts doesnt it ! Hahahaha i think the guy is hilarious ! Thank God obamama is about out of office!


What a moron!

The dude should try that stunt on the west side of Chicago.


Contango - he would get a cap busted in him by one of the many illegal gun owners!