Biff! Bam! Pow!

It’s Friday evening in New York, and I’m sitting in the secret base of the city’s pre-eminent superhero, which looks deceptively like the bottom floor apartment of a multifamily house in a quite section of Staten Island. Then again, who would ever suspect that beneath stately Wayne Manor sites the Bat cave?
Image file from Black Belt magazine:
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By Mark Jacobs
From my seat at what appears to be a normal kitchen table, I watch as mild-mannered martial arts instructor Chris Pollak transforms into his nighttime alter ego, the Dark Guardian, donning a Lycra pullover with his trademark “DG” logo and a spiffy black and red motorcycle jacket. Then he fastens on what I can only thing of as his “utility belt” filled with first-aid supplies, pepper spray and a thigh holster container a heavy duty flashlight in preparation for one of his regular nocturnal forays.
Being that this will be a standard safety patrol of some local area in Staten Island, hardly New York’s roughest borough, the Dark Guardian has decided to dispense with this full costume. That comes out only for larger operations, such as the time he and several superhero colleagues invaded Manhattan’s drug infested Washington Square Park, forcing a tense standoff with local dealers until the evildoers finally fled back to their lairs. Thus, he leaves his more eye-catching gear, including a bulletproof vest and matching leather motorcycle pants, at home this night. He says he gave up wearing a mask in public several years ago because it seemed to make him less accessible to people.
“Super-villains hunting me down in my real identity isn’t a big concern,” he admits.
This isn’t fantasy, nor is it the acting out of a disturbed soul. “Real-Life superheroes,” as costumed avengers now preferred to be called, is a growing movement of individuals- anywhere from 50 to 100- scattered across the country, people who dress up in secret identities and take to the streets to combat evil. (
All right, none of them has super-powers (as far as I know), and most of them spend their time making public appearances and encouraging people to do things like recycle, rather than taking on criminal gangs. But a handful, including the Dark Guardian, carry the RLSH movement to its logical extreme, actually seeking to stop crime. Admittedly, this is something that’s probably best not taken up by the average person in spandex. But the Dark Guardian, or rather Chris Pollak, is a full-time martial arts instructor and amateur kick boxer. He’s also smart enough not to place himself in danger if there’s no need.
“If I don’t have to intervene in something, I try not to,” he says. “I’ll call the police, and they can intervene. My thing is, just don’t look the other way. I want to be a drastic example for people to know they can do little things to make a difference out there.”
In the seminal graphic novel Watchman, the costumed vigilante Rorschach observes: “We do not do this thing because it is permitted. We do it because we have to.” While he might have been talking about the need in a degenerating society for superheroes to fight crime, he was also likely speaking about the need certain individuals have to recreate themselves as heroic figures.
Pollak admits to having had a trouble youth in which he had little contact with his father- and even wandered into juvenile delinquency at one point. But as a child hold fascination with the martial arts let him to a local school that taught kenpo and kajukenbo. He says the training turned his life around and made him a better person.
This is not an unusual story. Many get involved with the martial arts out of a desire to develop larger-than life physical powers and improve themselves as individuals. But most stop there. Pollak simply took his youthful fascination with powerful heroes to the next level. Having heard there were some people out there dressing up and performing feats of community activism around the country, he mad et he decision to become one of them eight years ago.
“I started off in plain clothes, doing community patrols and handing out. Food to the homeless- things like that,” he says. “But then I talked with others who were doing the superhero thing or wanted to do it, and I liked the idea of becoming a symbol and being able to reach out to people.
While it might be easy to dismiss the Dark Guardian and his colleagues   as random crazies, when you talk to him about the superhero business, he makes it seem not only normal but also noble. He’s quiet and subdue most of the time, particularly as I ride the train across Staten Island with him. We walk the length of the train just checking on things, and, in his less-formal uniform, no one seems to pay him any notice- which appears fine with the Dark Guardian.
“Only one in 10 or 20 patrols will anything actually happen,” he says. And typically, the “action” comes from handing out a blanket to a homeless person or helping someone who’s locked out of his car.
Pollak’s never had to use his martial arts skills in his crime-fighting persona. The tensest moment he’s encountered was the standoff in Washington Square Park, where one of the dealers flashed a gun at the assembled superheroes. Although none of them was bulletproof, the heroes stood their ground until the dealers drifted off.
Sometime after that, on another patrol of the park, the police approached him and took him to the station. At first thinking they were going to harass him, the Dark Guardian was pleasantly surprised to find they just wanted to give him a personal intelligence briefing on whom to watch out for and suggest that if he had trouble, he should call and let them handle it. It wasn’t exactly Commissioner Gordon using the bat signal, but in the world of real-life superheroes, it was close enough.

Crushable Books: ‘I Superhero’ And The Pain Of Being Phoenix Jones

Originally posted:
Posted by Drew Grant
When even Spiderman can’t fly through Broadway rafters without breaking most of his ribs (Turn Off The :-( !), it’s hard to imagine the real world containing men and women who would willingly risk life and ridicule by fighting crime. At least, not without being seriously deranged in the head.
Two weeks ago, we learned about Phoenix Jones, a masked vigilante who runs the Real Life Super Hero website and stops crime on the side (or maybe the opposite way around). Phoenix recently apprehended a carjacker in Washington state while wearing a nifty homemade mask and cape ensemble, leading the geeks of the world to go “Finally.”
But karma gave a giant wedgie to those same nerds last week, when some evil guys broke Phoenix’s nose with a gun just last week. What a shitty world we live in, huh?
Still, Mike McMullen has hope. I, Superhero is one man’s attempt to become the type of crusader that populate the pages of Marvel and DC by shadowing members of RLSH forums. What Mike finds during his time spent with IRL Justice Leaguers like Master Legend, Mr. Xtreme, and Amazonia is often funny, sometimes sad, and overwhelmingly inspirational.
That’s not to say a lot of these people don’t seem real effed up, to tell you the truth. Like when Mike goes to Orlando to meet “Master Legend,” only to find a guy who was abused as a child and takes out his aggression on possible perverts with extreme intolerance. Much like Rorschach from The Watchmen, Legend hates police and seems extremely unstable.

Not all 'Superheroes' are found in comic books

Originally posted:
superheroes-doc-ensembleSlamdance documentary takes aim at real costumed crime fighters
Scott Iwasaki, Of the Record staff
Posted: 01/18/2011 04:27:15 PM MST
With the popularity of comic-book crime fighters such as Batman, Spiderman, the Fantastic Four and Watchmen, “Superheroes” director Michael Barnett and producer Theodore “TJ” James said they were surprised to find, at least to their knowledge, no one has released a feature-length documentary on real-life, costumed-citizen crime fighters.
“We have a deeply imbedded mythology of superheroes in our culture,” Barnett said during a teleconference with The Park Record. “TJ and I stumbled upon this story idea and we thought it would be a slice of pop culture that has risen from the pages of comic books and become a reality.”
“For me it was a great idea and concept,” James said. “But when you’re faced with such a brilliant idea, you think it’s been done 100 times before, but, and this is a fact, we did not find the definitive documentary on the subject.”
Donning their dynamic-duo investigator caps, James and Barnett began searching the web for these community protectors.
“When we started the research process, we found they all had MySpace pages, believe it or not,” James said. “There is a whole process to be a legit superhero and they all are also registered on a couple of websites, which has them prove they are what they say they are and post videos.”
From there the two started calling these superheroes, which number in the hundreds.
“Doing the research was frustrating because the subjects are not very communicative with the media,” Barnett said. “Lots of stories have marginalized them and that’s not what we wanted to do. We wanted to dive in, be honest and share their stories and tell the world why they do what they do.”
Barnett and James ended up talking to more than 100 of these do-gooders and began narrowing the list.
“We wanted to find those who were most compelling, and/or the ones we thought we could get the most access from,” James said. “It took a while to find them, but eventually we found some great characters and great stories.”
The film’s characters hail from Northwest Florida, the Pacific Northwest, New York and Southern California.
“They are not connected geographically, but are doing same thing,” Barnett said.
While conducting the interviews, James and Barnett found being a superhero is not all about wearing a cape and cowl and subduing criminals. Another aspect of the word “superhero” means being prominent members of their communities,
“They do the most,” Barnett said. “They are active in communities, whether they participate in crime patrols or community out-reach or other volunteer work. Every part of the country has a different need. Some do tornado relief. Some do blood drives. Some do water handouts to the homeless and some clean your windshields for free at stoplights.”
There are also those who were inspired by the volunteer and unarmed crime patrollers, the Guardian Angels, Barnett said.
“The ones we focused on are the next evolution of the Guardian Angels,” he explained. “The Guardian Angels were ridiculed at first, but slowly they became liked. It’s now a hugely politicized and publicized organization. These guys we talked to don’t want to be a part of something political. They want to make change from the ground up.”
The ones who do go after criminals all have different methods, Barnett said.
“There is one who goes after child abductors and pedophiles in Southern California,” he said. “He focuses on a single case and brings as much exposure to it as he can. He brings to light any new facts and puts up his own reward money for information, and plasters the area with flyers.”
Then there is a group in New York, called the New York Initiative, whose members live together in Bushwick in Brooklyn.
“They are all from different parts of the country and met online and moved to New York,” said Barnett. “They dress up a girl in a provocative outfit or a guy as a male hooker and they patrol with walkie-talkies, and try to root out criminality.”
“It was usually 2 a.m. or 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday night when we would go out with them,” James said. “And it was pretty nerve-wracking.”
James served as the voice of reason when his film crew placed themselves in potentially volatile situations, which ranged from being accosted by drunken “frat boys” in San Diego, to confronting drug dealers in New York’s Washington Square Park.
“I was the one who was always afraid of someone getting hurt, but it’s been exciting to say the least,” he said.
“Here’s how the conversations went,” said Barnett. “TJ: ‘Very dangerous.’ Me: ‘I know. Let’s shoot it.’ But there were times when even I was literally too petrified to move.”
Before work started on the film, Barnett and James decided “Superheroes” wasn’t going to romanticize or glorify the idea of vigilantism. They wanted to show the public there are people who want to be superheroes and do what they can to make their communities better.
“It’s not for us to judge how these guys use their energy, whether they help a homeless person or catch criminals,” Barnett said. “They simply want things to be good and by being is how they do it.”
While the idea of being a superhero usually surrounds strong men such as Bruce Wayne who are in their prime, Barnett and James found the ages of the real-life superheroes range from 20 to 65.
“I think it takes a little while for anyone to gain some experience in life to push them to do something like this,” Barnett said. “If we generalize, it will lead us to say that a lot of these people have experienced some kind of trauma they are in some way compensating for, which materialized into (becoming a superhero).”
Others, said James, just wanted to get involved.
“Some experienced and witnessed people being apathetic to crimes all around them and that’s also has been a big driving force,” he said.
“We do hope no one gets hurt and nothing bad happens to these people who are very special to us,” Barnett said. “We have an honest film that will hopefully inspire dialogue and maybe even action to go out and do something to make the world better.”
Since they started working on the film, James and Barnett found a rise in the number of real-life superheroes.
“We started before the film ‘Kick Ass’ came out,” Barnett said. “After it came out last year, we found a lot of new real-life superheroes which were inspired from that film.”
Surprisingly most of the up-starts are from Salt Lake City, he said.
“We rolled into Salt Lake for a few days and it was overwhelming,” James said. “There are at least 20 of them who are in a group called Black Monday Society.”
“They are all tattoo artists working at least 100 patrols,” Barnett said. They are really passionate about the movement, and looking for ways to find to network and learn. They are very special people and will be at our screening.”
Slamdance Film Festival will show “Superheroes” in Treasure Mountain Inn’s main screening room, 255 Main Street, on Friday, Jan. 21 at 5:30 p.m. It will repeat on Wednesday, Jan. 26, at 8:30 p.m. in the Treasure Mountain Inn’s gallery room. Both screenings will also feature Mary Robertson’s “Missed Connections.” Individual tickets will be available Jan. 21, beginning at 9 a.m. at

'Real-Life' Superhero Gets Nose Broken by Bad Guy

Originally posted:
(USA Today) — Seattle’s self-proclaimed crime-fighting “superhero” got his nose broken over the weekend while trying to break up a fight while making his nightly rounds in mask and costume, KOMO-TV reports.
Phoenix Jones, the pseudonym of the caped crusader who leads the band of superheroes, tells KOMO that he had called 911 and was holding a man in a headlock when a second man pulled out a gun.
When Jones released the first bad guy, that man promptly kicked Jones in the face.
KOMO says some police officers are uneasy with the superhero gang and have confused some of them with real criminals. To avoid a mixup, Seattle police put out a bulletin in November to alert officers.
Police say they would prefer that the superheroes simply call 911 if they spot a crime in progress and not try to tackle it themselves.
“Does Superman get his ass kicked?” one detective said to KOMO. “These people should not be called superheroes.”
Jones, who claims that his team has either military or police training, started his crime-fighting ways after a friend of his was beaten up on the street.

Thugs Beat Up Real-Life 'Superhero'

Originally posted:
Life imitates Kick-Ass in Seattle

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

(Newser) – Self-proclaimed superhero Phoenix Jones could have used some superpowers, or at least some tools from Batman’s arsenal, over the weekend. The costumed vigilante, who patrols the streets of Seattle several times a week, had his nose broken and was threatened at gunpoint after he tried to break up a fight, the Telegraph reports.
Jones—leader of the real-life “Rain City Superheroes” group that also includes Buster Doe, Thorn, Green Reaper, Gemini, No Name, Catastrophe, Thunder 88 and Penelope—says the attack was no big deal, but police say that he and his fellow masked vigilantes should call 911 instead of taking on criminals. “They insert themselves into a potentially volatile situation and then they end up being victimized as well,” a police spokesman tells KOMO News.

Seattle Superheroes Provide Assistance For Stranded Motorist

Originally posted:
SEATTLE — “Superheroes” from Seattle’s Rain City Superhero Movement have struck again, this time helping a stranded motorist.
Walter Gray and his daughter were stuck on the side of Interstate 5 in Shoreline after running out of gas, when Phoenix Jones, who KIRO 7 recently interviewed, and some of his partners showed up to help.
“This guy runs up, and I roll down the window, and he says, ‘Phoenix Jones,’ as he introduces himself, ‘Rain City Superhero,'” Gray said. “And he’s dressed up in this molded rubber suit and seriously looks like a superhero.”
The group was able to get Gray’s car started and they sent Gray and his daughter on their way.

Wir sind Helden

Originally posted:,1872,8126150,00.html
Die Bewegung der Real Life Superheroes in den USA
Sie nennen sich Silver Dragon, Civitron oder Knight Owl. Sie sind Superhelden zum Anfassen. In bunten Kostümen kämpfen sie auf Amerikas Straßen für Gerechtigkeit, setzen sich für Arme und Hilfsbedürftige ein. Gerade in Krisenzeiten sehnen sich die Amerikaner nach solchen Helden des Alltags.
Civitron ist voller Tatendrang. Gemeinsam mit Knight Owl begibt er sich auf seine nächste Mission: Obdachlose mit Essen versorgen. Die sogenannten Real Life Superheroes kaufen Lebensmittel im Supermarkt und verteilen sie an die Obdachlosen im City Hall Park in Providence. Die Kosten tragen die beiden Helden im Latexanzug natürlich selbst. Sie wollen Vorbilder sein und die Welt verbessern. Wie Superhelden aus Hollywoodfilmen eben, nur als reale Helden des Alltags. Gerade jetzt scheint das Land solch selbstlose Helfer zu brauchen.
Superhelden ohne Superkräfte
Seit der letzten Wirtschaftskrise ist der Optimismus in den USA geschwunden. Die Zahl der Arbeitslosen liegt bei rund zehn Prozent, von der Wirtschaftskrise hat sich das Land noch nicht erholt, viele Menschen haben den Glauben an die Politiker verloren. Die Real Life Superheroes wollen den Menschen Mut machen, dass es trotz der schwierigen Zeiten weitergeht – ganz ohne Superkräfte. “Es hilft schon, wenn man einfach nur mit den Menschen über ihre Probleme redet. Wir wissen, dass wir nur einen kleinen Beitrag leisten können, um traurigen Menschen den Tag zu verschönern”, sagt Knight Owl.
Auch wenn viele Obdachlose bei der ersten Begegnung zumeist skeptisch sind, fassen sie schnell Vertrauen zu den maskierten Wohltätern. “Als ich eben hier saß und die beiden sah, dachte ich, die sind nicht ganz dicht”, sagt der Obdachlose Chris Tibedo. “Aber dann merkte ich, wie menschlich sie sind. Diese Jungs hier helfen uns, sind nett. Und vor allem behandeln sie uns mit Respekt.”
Die Gesellschaft wachrütteln
Die Real Life Superheroes wollen auch andere pflichtbewusste Amerikaner dazu bewegen, Bedürftigen zu helfen. “Wir sind so etwas wie bunte Hinweise darauf, dass man sich um sein Umfeld kümmern sollte. Durch unsere Kostüme schreien wir quasi ‘sieh dich um, sieh dir an, was los ist.’ Wir rütteln die Leute wach. Raus aus ihrer Selbstgefälligkeit”, sagt Civitron.
Gerade in Zeiten wirtschaftlicher Krisen und politischer Instabilität sehnen sich die Amerikaner nach Helden wie Civitron und Knight Owl. In den 30ern – zu Zeiten wirtschaftlicher Depression und Krieg – wurde der erste Superhelden-Comic verlegt. Die Botschaft der Comicstrips: Mit Tugendhaftigkeit und Eigeninitiative lässt sich Amerika neu erfinden. In den 80ern zu Beginn der Automobilkrise tauchten vermehrt selbsternannte Superhelden in den USA auf. Und auch jetzt scheint Amerika Helden zu brauchen.
Civitron ist sich sicher: “Das ist nur der Anfang dieser Superhelden-Bewegung. Umso mehr wir auf die Straße gehen und umso härter wir arbeiten, desto mehr Einfluss bekommen wir und desto mehr Menschen werden wir inspirieren.”
Mit Material von ZDF
English Version
Loosely translated by Artisteroi
The movement of the Real Life Super Heroes in the U.S.
They call themselves the Silver Dragon, Civitron or Knight Owl. They are super heroes to be touched. In colorful costumes, they are fighting for justice on America’s streets set, supports the poor and needy. Just crave in times of crisis, Americans for such everyday heroes.
Civitron is full of energy. Together with Knight Owl, he embarks on his next mission: to provide the homeless with food. The so-called Real Life Super Heroes in the supermarket to buy food and distribute it to the homeless at City Hall Park in Providence. The costs are the two heroes in the latex suit itself, of course you want to be role models and improve the world. As superhero movies in Hollywood just as only real heroes of everyday life. Right now the country seems to need such selfless helper.
Superhero without super powers
Since the last economic crisis of the optimism has waned in the United States. The number of unemployed is approximately ten percent of the economic crisis the country has still not recovered, many people have lost faith in politicians. The Real Life Superheroes want to encourage people that it continues despite the difficult times – with no superpowers. “It helps if you are just with the people talking about their problems. We know we can only make a small contribution to sad people to beautify the day,” says Knight Owl.
Although many homeless people are often skeptical at first encounter, they hold fast to trust the masked benefactors. “When I was sitting here and saw them, I thought that were not very close,” says Chris Tibedo homeless. “But then I realized how human they are. These guys are helping us are nice. And above all, they treat us with respect.”
The company shake
The Real Life Super Heroes will also move other conscientious Americans to help those in need. “We are like colorful signs that you should take care of their environment. Our costumes we cry quasi ‘to look up, look up to you what’s going on.” We the people shake awake. Get out of their complacency, “says Civitron.
In times of economic crisis and political instability, the Americans long for heroes like Civitron and Knight Owl. In the 30’s – at times of economic depression and war – the first superhero comic was published. The message of the comic strip: With virtue and initiative can invent new America. In the 80s at the beginning of the automotive crisis appeared to increase self-proclaimed superheroes in the United States. And now America seems to need heroes.
Civitron is certain. “This is just the beginning of this superhero movement all the more we take to the streets and the harder we work, the more influence we have and the more we will inspire people.”
With material from ZDF And photos courtesy of Perter Tangen

Real-Life Superhero Gets Nose Broken

Originally posted:
Phoenix Jones, Caped Crusader Patrolling Seattle, Attacked at Gunpoint
Jan. 11, 2010
Phoenix Jones, the real-life superhero who has gotten fame for patrolling the streets of Seattle, found his kryptonite in the guise of two attackers who left him with a broken nose over the weekend.
Armed with a skintight black-and-gold, belted costume, a cape and a fedora, Phoenix Jones suits up at night to fight crime on the streets of Seattle. He’s the leader of a real-life superhero movement called the Rain City Superheroes.
On Saturday, things turned violent when a man held Jones at gunpoint and another broke his nose.
“They were all swearing at each other and like about to fight,” Jones told ABC affiliate KOMO.
Jones stepped in to try and stop the men. The caped crusader claimed that he called 911 and had one of the men in a headlock when another man pulled out a gun.
“He starts swinging on me and starts an altercation with me,” Jones told KOMO.
The incident over the weekend is exactly what worries police about everyday citizens who take justice into their own hands.
“Our concern is if it goes badly, then we end up getting called anyway, and we may have additional victims,” Detective Mark Jamieson told ABC News last week.
Seattle police said that it is not illegal to dress up as a superhero, but they worry about excess calls to 911 when residents confuse Jones and the other real-life superheroes with the criminals they’re trying to capture.
Jones said that he calls police ahead of time to tell them where he’ll be patrolling. He said he developed his costume, along with his alter ego’s name, when his crime-fighting ways made him too recognizable.
“When I started breaking apart fights, I had no outfit or moniker or symbol, and people started recognizing me in my everyday life. It got kind of dangerous and very uncomfortable,” he said. “This suit is what people recognize, and when I take the suit off, I’m able to live as close to a normal life as possible until I put it back on and am ready to defend the people of Seattle.”
While Jones might not have Batman’s Alfred Pennyworth to help him build cool new gadgets, he has adapted his car and costume to protect him.
He wears a bulletproof vest and carries not just a Taser but a net gun and a grappling hook.
His car has a computer in it that prints any e-mails sent to his superhero e-mail address.
On the night ABC News went on patrol with Jones, the caped crusader zapped a warning shot with his Taser during a very tense run in with a man he said was about to drive drunk.
“Just back up! Stay back, stay away. I don’t want to have to Tase you,” Jones yelled.
Jones’ sidekicks, Red Dragon and Buster Joe, called the police.
Jones’ quest to help his fellow residents is a weirdly close imitation of the movie “Kick Ass,” whose characters dress up as superheroes and take on crime fighting.
Jones said he has a real nine-to-five job, a wife and two kids.
He told ABC affiliate KOMO that an incident with his son inspired him to put on his cape.
One night someone broke into Jones’ car, and the broken glass injured his son and resulted in a trip to the emergency room. When people told Jones that several people witnessed the break-in but did nothing, he was dumbfounded.
“Teenagers are running down the street, breaking into cars, and no one does anything? Where’s the personal accountability?” Jones told KOMO.
Jones emphasizes that his real mission is to help people — he also hands out food to the homeless. On the night ABC News followed the men, they distributed food from Taco Bell to homeless people sitting on the sidewalks.
While police might be skeptical, Jones and his gang of wannabe heroes don’t plan to give up.
“I have two kids,” he said. “I always tell them the same thing every time before I go on patrol: ‘This is the only thing daddy could think of to make the world better for you guys, and I’ll see you when I get home.'”
ABC Affiliate KOMO contributed to this story.

'Real Life Superhero' Gets His Nose Broken In Street Fight

Originally posted:
Phoenix Jones, a.k.a Phoenix Jones the Guardian of Seattle, a.k.a. the “Real Life Superhero” who dresses up and tries to thwart crime in Washington State, had his nose broken and a gun pointed at him in an altercation in Seattle last weekend.
KOMO reports that the incident occurred Saturday night, when Jones saw two men “swearing at each other and like about to fight.” The mask-and-body-armor-wearing Jones stepped in to intervene, but one of the men started “swinging” at him. So Jones put him in a headlock, and called 911. That’s when the other man pulled out a gun. Jones let go, and was kicked in the face by the man he had just been holding. Both men got away.
Police told KOMO that they fear someone could end up getting killed if Jones and his Rain City Superhero Movement keep up their “patrols.”
“They insert themselves into a potentially volatile situation and then they end up being victimized as well,” Seattle Police Detective Mark Jamieson said. “If you see something, call 911.”
But Jones, who said that he turned down reality show offers from the Discovery Channel, MTV and A&E, sounded undaunted.
“I train for these situations,” he said. “I don’t just come out willy nilly and run out on the streets.”
(h/t New York Post)

Attack leaves Seattle 'superhero' with broken nose

Originally posted:

During an interview on Monday, January 10, 2011, "Phoenix Jones" recounts the attack that left him with a broken nose. By Komo News

During an interview on Monday, January 10, 2011, “Phoenix Jones” recounts the attack that left him with a broken nose. By Komo News

By Luke Duecy & KOMO Staff January 10, 2011

SEATTLE — Phoenix Jones calls himself a crime fighter.
He has a cape, a mask and a stun gun and he spends several nights each week patrolling Seattle and other areas trying to stop crime.
“I endanger my life with a reason and a purpose,” he says.
But over the weekend, a man held Phoenix at gunpoint and another broke his nose.
Police say enough is enough and that someone may end up getting killed.
“Don’t insert yourself into those situations,” Seattle Police Detective Mark Jamieson said in an interview last week. “If you see something, call 911.”
The attack happened near the intersection of 5th and James on Saturday night.
“They were all swearing at each other and like about to fight,” Phoenix said. So he stepped in to break up the brawl and one of the guys turned on him.
“He starts swinging on me and starts an altercation with me.”
Phoenix said he called 911, put one of the men in a headlock and waited for police. But seconds later, Phoenix said, another man pulled out a gun.
When he let go of the man he was holding, the man kicked Phoenix in the face, breaking his nose. Both men got away.
Phoenix said it was no big deal, but the attack is exactly what police were afraid was going to happen when Phoenix and his superhero cohorts started patrolling the city.
“They insert themselves into a potentially volatile situation and then they end up being victimized as well,” Jamieson said.
Police worry Phoenix’s recent taste of fame has pushed him to put himself in harm’s way. He has been featured on international news shows, and said he declined offers from the Discovery Channel, MTV and A&E to be in a reality TV series.
People on the street stop him and ask him for autographs, but Phoenix said that’s not what motivates him.
“I train for these situations,” he said. “I don’t just come out willy nilly and run out on the streets.”
But after looking down the barrel of a gun, police hope Phoenix stops before it’s too late.
Officials say it’s not illegal to dress up in costume and patrol, but with the stakes higher they’re asking the would-be superheros to just call 911.