Since when does the lure of an Ozzy Osbourne concert become the impetus for a sting operation by one local sheriff?
That's what an outraged Osbourne would like to know after the events that transpired October 29 before his show at the Fargodome in Fargo, N.D.
As masterminded by Paul D. Laney, a local county sheriff who ran the operation under the name of PDL Productions, this is how the sting was set up, all without Osbourne's knowledge:
Sheriff Laney took the liberty of planning an Ozzy Osbourne pre-show concert party by offering the very same perks included in Ozzy's "official" VIP tour packages including two tickets to 40 unsuspecting citizens who received the PDL invites by mail.
When the "winners" showed up at the bash, they were promptly handcuffed and arrested on various outstanding warrants. Sheriff Laney quickly held a televised press conference to congratulate himself on the successful sting operation.
And what does Ozzy think of being used as bait? He's pissed.
"Instead of holding a press conference to pat himself on the back," Osbourne said, "Sheriff Laney should be apologizing to me for using my name in connection with these arrests. It's insulting to me and to my audience and it shows how lazy this particular sheriff is when it comes to doing his job.
"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. They have also been very supportive of my wife Sharon's colon cancer charity by raising over a million dollars (partly through VIP ticket sales) at my shows. It's obvious to me that this sheriff has an agenda and is just trying to make a name for himself on my back."
Despite his comments about Sheriff Laney's sting operation, Ozzy said he harbors no ill will toward the people of Fargo and hopes to return there under more favorable circumstances.