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June 5th, 2012
11:35 AM ET

Donald Driver settles controversy after woman snatches Driver's cleat from young fan's hand

Green Bay Packers wide receiver Donald Driver is already a Super Bowl champion on the football field. He's also a hot shot on the dance floor, winning this year's "Dancing with the Stars."

His biggest fan is 12-year old Stephen Wagner, who went to see driver play at a charity softball game in Wisconsin on Sunday. After the game, Driver took off his cleats and threw them in the stands for fans. Wagner caught one of the cleats, but then the woman next to him snatched it away.

What happened next? Driver talks with Soledad on the phone this morning and explains how he made it up to Wagner.

"I got on Twitter," Driver says. "I said if anybody knew the kid was, please give me a call back and everybody was, like, I know who the kid is."

He adds, "It kind of worked out. I saw Stephen yesterday. We had a great conversation and great time. He was happy just being at the game at first."

O'Brien explains Driver gave Wagner a pair of autographed cleats, a signed baseball bat to his #1 fan, a signed jersey, three books that he wrote and an autographed Packers cups as well.

Filed under: Doing good
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. fan

    Everything happens for a reason.. and emotions get the best of people most days. I agree that it was wrong but who is everyone to sit back and judge, because that makes you no better of a person. In the end the boy ended up with more items from Donald so everyone should let it go, and worry about something more important.

    June 7, 2012 at 1:51 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Allen

    This guy Driver claims to be a dancer.

    Let's see how much dancing he gets done in the end zone this year when the Packers play some real football teams.

    The Bears, The Saints, the Colts, and the Giants come to mind quickly.

    June 6, 2012 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Nick

    Does this woman go to ML baseball games and snatch baseballs that are thrown to kids by the players? When I catch a baseball I usually give it to a little kid that is near me. If I kept the ball it would just end up in a drawer somewhere never to be seen again.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Bill

    It is so refreshing to see these overpaid atheletes show some class once in awhile. Way to go Donald! You're a classy guy!

    June 6, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Shepherd

    Kudos to Donald for his polite comments and good-natured handling of this.

    BUT, the media's coverage of this is so lame. Once one outlet depicts someone as terrible and callous, no one lets the facts get in the way. Its one big pile-on. You'd think the ranks of media reporters is thick with bleating sheep.

    If you look at the video, the cleat is coming directly to the woman and out of reach of the boy. As it reaches the woman, the boy reaches across and grabs from her just as she catches it. She wrestles it back, and now she is the bid bad witch. How is it that the boy more deserving, especially since the cleat was not coming to him anyway? If it is because he is a child? Then none of the adults should even be at the railing. Maybe they don't even need to attend the fundraiser. Oh wait, that's not what organizers want either. Maybe the adults, who have the cash after all, should drop their money in a bucket at the entrance.

    Donald was polite enough to not call her out. but maybe he can do something for her commensurate with what he has done for the grabbing child. After all, she is clearly visible, and I am sure, clearly recognized in her community where this was human interest of the night. I am sure she is shocked and embarrassed by the media’s coverage and slanted portrayal of her.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Bobby

    Awwe. Good news are good. 🙂

    June 6, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Doledart

    I hope they show that video on every news channel in WI, and people recognize that shameless, classless pos broad.

    WTG Driver for paying attention and going out of your way to follow up with that kid. Real class.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. CBC

    Always thought Donald Driver was a classy football player – this proves he is a classy person all around.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Dan

    Wow, I hope that woman is outed and embarassed for being such a sow.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:09 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Nunnov Yorbiznicz

    Watch the video. While I'm not supporting the woman's actions, WATCH THE VIDEO. The shoe lands right in front of the WOMAN and it's the kid who's grabbing at it. It wasn't thrown to the kid, it was thrown at the stands, and it landed in front of the woman with the kid clawing at it. Who's to say that a kid's entitled to everything? Maybe he should get a trophy, too, just for showing up that day. And a medal. And a certificate, already framed. It was fair game. I'd like to see someone PROVE that this kid is, in fact, the BIGGEST fan. All this nonsense over the PACKERS, no less. Wisconsin's already proved, abundantly, that it's a land without reason and tact.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:09 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. John in NY

    I lost all faith in humanity back when cabbage patch dolls first came out and all the mania started over getting them. I happened to be in a local department store and passing by table where they put out a bunch of them and a little girl around 5 or 6 picked one up and a woman in her early 40s literally knocked her down and ripped the package from her hand.

    I went over and grabbed it from her and told her "your lucky I'm not a sleezy looser like yourself because if I was I'd knock the S#@$ out of you right now" and then I took doll and gave it back to the girl, whose mother hadn't seen it happen but was very happy I had helped out.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. BoogerFree

    What a horrible person that woman is. She should publicly apologize for her actions.

    June 6, 2012 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. the_dude

    I'll bet $100 she is a govt employee part of the public union debacle. How else could she be so greedy???

    June 6, 2012 at 11:58 am | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Mark

    Nicely handled, but I'm not sure about the "autographed Packers cups". Hope they hadn't been used first.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Will

    The state's transition from first world country to white trash cesspit is almost complete.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Cinman

    Who wants to get in line to marry her? Hello? Anyone?

    June 6, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Laura

    What an embarrassment that woman is. Shame on her.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Fudge pAckers

    Yes, hr facebook was flooded with threats to the point where she had to close it down lolololololol

    June 6, 2012 at 11:48 am | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Joshua Johnson

    Scott Walker's campaign manager strikes again!

    June 6, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Rdtwine

    She was no doubt also one of the self-centered lunatics who tried to recall Walker.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:43 am | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Chuck

    we would have never heard from this woman had the event not been captured on video and her face plastered across the nation. Typical example of "I don't mind showing who I really am infront of strangers, but I don't want friends and family knowing I'm an a**."

    June 6, 2012 at 11:42 am | Report abuse | Reply
  22. mike

    Nice of Driver to fix this for the kid....too bad the world is going to end in 5 months though

    June 6, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Mungo32

    Autographed packers cups... I hope they are the kind you can drink out of.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:32 am | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Mr. Ed

    Great job by Donald to get the kid something after this person "stole" the shoes from him. One thing I've seen pro athletes do is to point out the person in the stands he/she wants to give the item to and stand there until it happens. I've see athletes also tell an older person to hand over the item to the kid (also seen rock stars do that at concerts). Still a great job by Donald.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:31 am | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Bill Smith

    Now that is a real Super Star... Way to go Donald...

    June 6, 2012 at 11:27 am | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Bub

    A signed baseball bat...from a football player. Great....thanks for nothing.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:21 am | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Sean from California

    I usually do not sound off in these kinds of forums but wow, how horrible are you to steal a piece of memorabilia from a kid? How cool is Donald Drive (and I'm not a Packers fan) to take care of his fan like that? Love it whan an athlete takes care of their fans

    June 6, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Who's the bully parent

    Nice job Mom. I bet you'd be the first women screaming if someone bullied you child.

    You lady, should be ashamed!!!

    June 6, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Andrew

    She's probably some trailer trash that was hoping to make some $$$ off eBay when she got a hold of the shoe. As always, reall class exemplified by 'mature' Packer fans.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse | Reply
  30. johneturnerii

    This woman is basically in hiding due to threats of violence against her and her family. All of this over a smelly, sweaty cleat.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse | Reply
  31. GO BEARS/ROMNEY 2012

    I bet that chick was a Union Stooge that thinks the whole world owes her for sitting on her butt and getting fatter for 8 hours a day.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:08 am | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Lee

    Driver has always been a class act. I am not a Packers fan, but appreciate all the talent and effort they put forward each year. To see an athlete do this shows there are still so many good people out there. The selfish act of the woman is insane, she probably wanted the cleat to put on Craigslist for money. Some people are so self-indulged, they honestly cannot see the cynicism she just created in that child, had it not been for the follow up from Driver.

    Awesome job, Donald. You are truly a winner!

    June 6, 2012 at 11:06 am | Report abuse | Reply
  33. KM

    The woman deserves to feel bad. Thank you Donald Driver for making the situation have a favorable outcome.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:05 am | Report abuse | Reply
  34. JohnW

    Man, I hope the Packers cup he gave him isn't the kind of cup I think it is...

    June 6, 2012 at 11:05 am | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Frank

    Donald Driver is a first class individual. I am hopeful he stays healthy this year and helps the team to another Super Bowl victory.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Nedbones

    Wow. What a great guy. We need more of this kind of graciousness in professional sports. Thank you Donald.

    June 6, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Jay

    Whenever I go to a sporting event, more often than not a baseball game, I always first try to see if there are any young kids around that I can give a ball do in the rare case that I ever catch a souvenir!

    June 6, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse | Reply
  38. tet1953

    Surprised other fans didn't step up. I definitely would have tried to.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse | Reply
  39. tet1953

    Surprised other fans didn't step up. I believe I would have.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:55 am | Report abuse | Reply
  40. John

    The legal courts have already given their opinion on this sort of matter. For such an object to be yours all you need to do is catch or be the first to hold it. It is not necessary for someone to maintain possession through a mugging. Taking and/or grabbing such an object from someone is a crime, and should be treated as such. Someone knows who committed this criminal act, and they too should come forward with their information.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse | Reply
  41. ross

    A Bears fan would never do that

    June 6, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Doug from Southern California

    that kid definitely came out on top 🙂

    June 6, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse | Reply
  43. TC

    While what she did was despicable, I'm glad she did it. The kid got a bunch of swag instead of just a shoe and was able to meet Donald Driver. She's still a tool though and I hope karma catches up with her in a non-violent yet utterly embarrassing way.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:51 am | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Adam

    If I was Driver, after getting the outcry of support when asking if anyone knew who the kid was, I would then ask if anyone knew who the women who took the cleats from the kid. At that point, I would make her life hell... I know DD is a good guy and wouldn't do anything to ruin his reputation. However, if he was to call her out and put her on the hot seat I would have even more respect for him than I did before. Its supposed to be Elders = Wisdom/Kindness and Adolescence = Immaturity/Rudeness... Not the other way around... She probably went home and bragged about it too... If I were her friend, I would steal the cleats and donate them to some sports charity (would have given them back to the kid if DD didnt reach out to him).

    June 6, 2012 at 10:46 am | Report abuse | Reply
  45. pat

    Anyone know who she is?

    June 6, 2012 at 10:44 am | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Randy

    What was wrong with that woman? But more importantly, what is the deal with the kids father? If it were me I would have walked over and ripped it out of her hands and said, "How does it feel to have someone bigger than you pull something out of your hands?" I may have thrown in a few expletives as well, but that is besides the point. I mean, that father has to look his kid in the eyes with him knowing that he didn't stand up for him. If the dad wanted to show his son that violence was not an appropriate reaction, he could have at least gone up to her and yelled or embarrassed the hell out of her until she gave it back.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:44 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mike from Calgary

      Interesting take ... but it would have been fitting application of the Golden Rule: to treat this selfish woman the way she treated others – the way she wanted to be treated herself!

      Probably the father's response was most fitting though: he did not escalate the rudeness or violent conduct, and created a great teaching moment for his son ... and he allowed Donald Driver to show what a class act he is ... at a charity event no less. Donald Driver is a true WINNER! He has demonstrated the true value of sport – the POWER TO INSPIRE!

      June 8, 2012 at 11:30 am | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Jason S

    Donald Driver is awesome for doing that. I guess not all of the GB packers are dirt bags after all. That woman should be ashamed of herself and atleast auction the cleats she stole from a little kid to benefit that charity. I guess GB fans are dirt bags.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:44 am | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Johnny Orlando

    More Idiocy from Wisconsin

    June 6, 2012 at 10:35 am | Report abuse | Reply
  49. jj

    I'm thinking she must be embarrased today.

    June 6, 2012 at 10:34 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Donald Driver Duck

      Packers fans don't get embarrassed, have you seen their wardrobes?

      June 6, 2012 at 10:42 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • J. Mark Lane

      One would hope so, but I kind of doubt it. Anyone who would do something that cheap and crass is probably incapable of embarassment. She's probably laughing, rationalizing it by thinking the kid came out better so she did him a favor. She's a piece of garbage. But then, it seems like the world of "sports fans" in this country these days is full of such trash.

      June 6, 2012 at 10:48 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • JohnS

      Someone capable of doing that would be incapable of feeling embarrassment. Sure enough, she bragged about it and posted a photo on her Facebook page. Go figure.

      June 6, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • soulcatcher

      Especially she's NOT embarassed after she had the cleat dipped in latex for her pleasure. Though if someone walks in on her maybe.

      June 6, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Portia

      And, I bet she isn't the least bit fact, I bet she is mad that she didn't get all the other stuff too...few Americans have any shame anymore

      June 6, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Mike from Calgary

    Class act by Donald Driver – his handling of this situation reveals his character as a Winner in so many ways.

    Can't help but wonder WHO IS THAT LOSER ... the woman who pinched the souvenir from the 12 year old at this charity event!

    June 5, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • quacknduck

      Agree 110%

      June 6, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Portia

      I think we should all try and find out who she is and make her feel bad...what a tool

      June 6, 2012 at 11:39 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • bambam

      Well said!

      June 6, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse | Reply

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