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MPD: Man offering hugs outside restaurant captured, arrested at weekend fair

A 2nd man who had been banned by the restaurant was also detained, police said.
(NBC15)
Published: Sep. 20, 2021 at 3:11 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - A man reportedly offering free hugs outside a restaurant near downtown Madison was arrested Saturday after allegedly trying to fight anyone who would refuse. Additionally, during the same call, officers also took into custody a man who had been banned from the restaurant two weeks earlier.

According to the Madison Police Dept. report, Jeffrey Johnson was standing outside the eatery, in the 1200 block of Williamson St., wanting to give people hugs. If someone did not want one, though, the 33-year-old would allegedly become confrontational and combative.

He had left before officers arrived at the restaurant around 8:30 p.m., but authorities soon located him at the 44th annual Willy Street Fair and took him into custody. While being detained, Johnson also allegedly started spitting and kicking at the officers, making threats, and ended up damaging the MPD cruiser.

While at the restaurant, officers also arrested Jason Stone for coming to the restaurant twice that day, despite a reported previous ban on ever returning. The reported did not give the reasons for his coming back over the weekend.

The 38-year-old Stone was booked on a count of trespassing as well as five felony bail jumping and five more misdemeanor bail jumping allegations.

Johnson, meanwhile, was initially booked on a single count of disorderly conduct, five counts of misdemeanor bail jumping, and three more for felony bail jumping. After his arrest, police added allegations of damage to property, threats to law enforcement, and resisting arrest.

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