Fargo Sting Operation Leaves Ozzy, Fans Feeling Stung

November 2, 2007 11:06 AM ET

This week, Ozzy Osbourne is angry. Yesterday, the former Black Sabbath frontman focused his fury on illegal downloaders. Now, the Ozz is "outraged" at a sheriff in Fargo, North Dakota, for using an Osbourne/Rob Zombie concert on Monday to attract and then arrest fans on outstanding warrants. In a statement, Ozzy insists he had no knowledge of the sting operation Fargo sheriff Paul D. Laney masterminded without permission. As we told you Wednesday, Laney and several other area task forces scheduled a fake pre-concert party, then mailed out invitations to some of Fargo's least finest. When the invitees showed up (the charges ranged from failure to pay child support to unpaid parking tickets to drug charges), they were greeted with handcuffs and those arrest warrants. After the successful (and let's face it, comical if you weren't busted) sting operation netted forty perps, Laney held a congratulatory press conference, which especially irked Ozzy. "Instead of holding a press conference to pat himself on the back," says Osbourne, "Sheriff Laney should be apologizing to me for using my name in connection with these arrests."

Ozzy should be mad; he's having a hard enough time selling copies of Black Rain, now these fan have to pay their fines and buy CDs? "Sheriff Laney went out of his way to tarnish my reputation by implying that I somehow attract a criminal element, which is certainly not true. My audiences are good hard-working people who have been hugely supportive of my music for nearly four decades," Ozzy continued. Despite Laney's sting operation, Ozzy insists he holds no grudges against Fargo, and hopes to return to the city under "more favorable circumstances."

Related Stories:
Ozzy Osbourne Blames Poor Album Sales On Illegal Downloading
Ozzy Fans in Fargo Get Treated To Trick In Halloween Sting Operation
Ozzy Osbourne Teams Up With Rob Zombie For Joint Tour

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories


The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

More Song Stories entries »