Chris Jericho became the first ever AEW World Champion when he defeated Adam Page in the main event of AEW All Out on Saturday night, and the next day everyone was talking about the belt as it was reported stolen less than 24 hours after the show.
It was later reported that someone found the belt on the side of the road and brought it to the Tallahassee PD.
Jeffrey Purlew of the Tallahassee Democrat is now reporting that Tallahassee resident Frank Price found the belt on the side of the road as he and his wife were driving home from a day of scalloping on his 41st birthday.
“It’s pretty comical,” Price said. “It’s like the start for a great screenplay. This story could have gone in so many other funny directions. There are so many funny twists to it.”
As the couple pulled onto Highway 20 they saw a velvet bag in the middle of a turn lane near Capital Circle Southwest. They waited until they got home to open the bag.
“I think I said something like, ‘Whoa, it’s a huge wrestling belt, check this thing out!’ ” Price said. “I never would have guessed that if I had a lifetime of guesses.”
They then googled the belt and discovered it was an AEW title belt, but they thought it was a replica after they saw other replicas for sale on eBay.
Price then listed the belt on craigslist thinking it belonged to a kid or pro wrestling fan. He then started getting replies from fans who informed him the belt had been reported stolen, he then turned the belt in to police and answered questions regarding how he found it.
Frank Price bumped into Jericho’s limo driver, Mike Vaughn, at the police station, and he explained that he was relieved he wasn’t going to have to file an insurance claim for the belt, and he gave Frank a $200 reward.
TPD then got a sworn statement from Price, as they were suspicious about the reward and wondered whether Price and Vaughn had planned to meet at the police station ahead of time, but Price insisted the meeting was coincidental.
“I was joking that there would be investigators following me around,” Price said. “I figure the best approach is to just tell the truth and have fun with the whole thing.”
Price noted that he doesn’t know how the belt ended up on the side of the road, but he doubted it was stolen.
“I think what happened is they just set it on the trunk of the limo and it just fell off,” he said. “The only other possibility is that it was part of a pro-wrestling plot setup. They need all the publicity they can get.”
BREAKING NEWS! @AEWrestling champion #ChrisJericho recovers the #AEW title belt HIMSELF, in less than 24 hours!! Awaits much deserved THANK YOU from the entire AEW fan base & roster… #LeChampion #ALittleBitOfTheBubbly pic.twitter.com/6IsuiuCfIv
— Chris Jericho (@IAmJericho) September 5, 2019