More information has come out regarding how Chris Jericho's AEW World Championship belt was recovered.
Jeff Burlew of the Tallahassee Democrat spoke to 41-year-old Frank Price, who said he found the belt as he and his wife were driving home from scalloping with friends on his birthday this Sunday. The article noted that Price "spotted what appeared to be a velvet bag in the middle of a turn lane" and opened it when they got home.
“I think I said something like, ‘Whoa, it’s a huge wrestling belt, check this thing out!" Price told the Tallahassee Democrat. “I never would have guessed that if I had a lifetime of guesses.”
Price said his wife Googled the title belt, but he thought it was just a fan's replica or something like that. He posted it in the Tallahassee lost and found section of Craigslist.
“I found a pro wrestling championship belt on hwy 20 Sunday afternoon,” Price wrote on Craigslist. “Contact me with details and you can come get it.”
On Tuesday, news broke that Jericho had reported the title belt stolen. The police report that was filed on Sunday said that "[Jericho] stated he arrived at the Millionaire Club Airport Terminal and placed the belt inside his rented limousine. The limo driver shuttled [Jericho] to Longhorn [Steakhouse] for dinner. [Jericho] remained at Longhorn while the limo driver returned to the airport. [Jericho] had taken the wrong luggage from the airport and the driver took it back to the terminal. When the driver picked up [Jericho] from the restaurant, the belt was missing."
When Price was made aware of the news, he contacted the Tallahassee Police Department on Wednesday morning and was told to bring it to their station. Burlew wrote:
[Price] handed the belt over to an investigator in the lobby and answered questions about how he found it.
While he was there, he bumped into Mike Vaughn, the owner of Mike’s Limousine, which had given Jericho the fancy ride to the restaurant. Price said Vaughn was planning to file an insurance claim for the missing belt and was so pleased it had been found he gave him a $200 reward.
Later that day, TPD investigators called and said they needed to take Price’s sworn statement. They were slightly suspicious about the reward and wondered whether Price had called Vaughn to arrange for their meeting at TPD and the reward. Price assured him the meeting was purely coincidental and the reward unplanned.
Price has texts and emails, receipts, witnesses and GPS data on his cellphone to back up his story and prove he was nowhere near Million Air or LongHorn Steakhouse when the belt went missing. Police haven’t said he’s under investigation, but he said he wouldn’t be surprised if he were.
“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.”
Tallahassee Police said yesterday that the investigation is still active and asked anyone with information to call them at (850) 891-4200 or Crime Stoppers at (850) 574-TIPS.
Price told the Tallahassee Democrat that he doesn't think the title belt was actually stolen: “I think what happened is they just set it on the trunk of the limo and it just fell off."