BENSENVILLE, Ill. – Chicago Blackhawks forward Tuomo Ruutu was mistakenly arrested this week and detained briefly as a suspect in a robbery attempt in a Chicago suburb, according to authorities.
He was released after indulging an officer’s request for an autograph. Bensenville police arrested the 24-year-old Ruutu on Wednesday because he matched the description of a robbery suspect, said Bensenville Village Manager James Johnson.
“He met the initial description,” Johnson said. “This was just an unfortunate coincidence.”
Ruutu, dressed in a black team sweat suit and black cap, told police he was out for a short jog after team practice at Edge Ice Arena, Johnson said.
Authorities said an armed man, wearing a black jacket, black pants and black hat had entered an apartment complex near the arena before noon and demanded cash from the office manager. After the man discovered the manager and office safe didn’t have any money, he fled on foot.
Ruutu, a native of Finland drafted by Chicago in 2001, described the whole event – including the ride in the police car – as “a fun incident.”
“I was just in the wrong spot at the wrong time,” Ruutu said. “It happens to me all the time.”
Ruutu was released from police custody after a witness told authorities that Ruutu was not the man who attempted the robbery.
After Ruutu gave authorities his name, one officer asked for an autograph.
“I believe this was one of his son’s favourite players,” Johnson said.