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Naked Tourist Blocks Traffic, Gets Shot With Taser

Jan 18, 2011 – 10:42 AM
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Ben Muessig

Ben Muessig Contributor

He might be the king of the world, but police say this emperor needs new clothes.

A tourist was shot with a taser three times by Florida police after he allegedly got naked and blocked traffic in Big Coppitt Key while screaming he was "king of the world."
Richard Gervasi, who allegedly took LSD, blocked traffic in the Florida Keys, claimed he was 'The King of the World', then got tased by police. (Monroe County Sheriff's Office)
Monroe County Sheriff's Office
Even the "king of the world" is governed by the laws of the land. Florida police used a taser on a tourist who allegedly claimed he was "king of the world" while blocking traffic naked. Richard Gervasi reportedly admitted he took LSD and drank beforehand.

After receiving a call about a nude man obstructing traffic on U.S. 1 at around 1:30 a.m. on Jan. 16, law enforcement officials say they encountered Richard Gervasi of Phoenixville, Pa., and two of his friends in a restaurant parking lot, according to

When a Monroe County Sheriff's Office deputy arrived on the scene, Gervasi, 43, allegedly began attacking one of his friends, then started approaching the cop.

The deputy fired her taser, but Gervasi reportedly ripped the prongs from his skin and continued to advance on the officer. So she fired again, knocking the nude man to the ground. Gervasi allegedly got back on his feet, only to be shot a third time with the taser and cuffed.

The suspect -- who reportedly claimed he was "made of steel" -- admitted to drinking and taking LSD before the incident. He has been charged with disturbing the peace and resisting arrest.


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