Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Major Topps Is Dead--Now Let The Public Discussion Begin

Random stock photo by John Hoff

First of all, I did some quick checking and, generally, a legal claim for defamation dies with the plaintiff and heirs are not able to continue the claim. So--after trying for about two years to get a story about Major Topps, the surprising news this morning that Topps has died suddenly brings an opportunity to have an open and public discussion about this man, who has been a fixture in North Minneapolis youth circles for quite a while.

First of all...

...I know numerous individuals in North Minneapolis who--not quite jokingly--refer to Major Topps by a nickname which is a sort of play on words. Because of this play on words I have tried--for about two years--to find out if there's any fire where everybody says there is smoke. But I've turned up nobody who will go on record, though I did get an alarming secondhand report passed on by neighborhood super citizen Megan Goodmundson who knew two minors who participated in Major Topps' drum line.

Secondly, I would really love to know that back story about the assault on Major Topps described in the Star Tribune. I am strongly inclined to believe that if somebody assaulted Major Topps, there was a very good reason they were angry with him.


NoMi Passenger said...

For years, at least 7 years, I have encountered people that have often referred to him, in that half-jokingly manner that you point out, as "Minor Bottoms". Major Topps. Minor Bottoms.

I find it very peculiar that he was thrown down basement stairs, "body slammed" and "beaten unmercifully" in a church and he fails to show up for the statement appointment with the police.

There is more to the story of the church beating and his "nickname".

Was his name always "Major Topps" - or was there a legal name, or a previous name?

Anonymous said...

Wow, I never even heard of this guy. It makes me wonder what other NoMi crazies I'm missing out on! We need a chart like on The L Word, only showing all the NoMi demagogues and why they hate each other. Don Allen would be like Shane--he hates everyone! LOL

Johnny Northside! said...

The original Star Tribune story contained extensive details about an altercation involving Major Topps, including being body slammed onto a table, and "beaten unmercifully" (with quote marks around it) with a folding chair.

A subsequent version of the story notably omits these details. What's up with that, Star Tribune? After I went and linked to you and everything.

Anonymous said...

Major had some good in him, but he also had a lot of bad. Upon his arrival to Minneapolis, he was know as "Jackie" and was openly gay. He worked the Ave at night. He liked being in the presence of young boys and influenced quite a few North Side boys in his day. His beating didn't just happen, he probably touched or approached someones son or brother. He has been beat up before because of his actions. He tried to keep it undercover, but too many people knew the real Major Topps.

Anonymous said...

I just don't understand why the community let him get away with being around young boys for so long. Did they not know or did they not care? I know someone knew and the community wasn't in the dark. I would never let my boys play drums or dance for him. He always looked thirsty!

Johnny Northside! said...

Very frustrating that the Star Tribune article is now at the end of a dead link. I should have taken all that info and copied and pasted.

You can't trust Star Tribune links. They go dead. I avoid them whenever possible and use links from other media.

Anonymous said...

No one ever wants to talk about the elephant in the living room! Of course it's not nice to speak ill of the dead, but evil is evil and always tries to hid behind religion just as he did. I really wish some of the friends I grew up would have come forward many years ago and protected the younger generations since the grown ups who should have protected them didn't. Major isn't the only evil that has plagued the community for far too damn long!