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July 19: Keith Richards And Mick Jagger Arrested In Warwick

But they still made it to the show
Published July 19, 2023
Keith Richards and Mick Jagger Arrested In Warwick RI

On this day in 1972, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards almost missed their Boston Garden show after the two were arrested for assault in Rhode Island. 

How Keith Richards And Mick Jagger Got Arrested

The band was headed to the Boston Logan Airport when their plane had to land at Theodore F. Green State Airport in Warwick Rhode Island due to heavy fog. By this time the clocks were ticking to get to the show. Their opener, Stevie Wonder, had already begun playing. 

Frustrated, the band had to wait for a bus to take them the rest of the way to Boston. 

In the meantime, the media had found out that The Stones had landed in Warick and flocked to the airport. 

According to Frank Ricci, a Warwick officer who attended the scene, Andy Dickerman, a Providence Journal photographer, was claiming that The Stones's entourage had assaulted him. Ricci suggested that the band let the photographer take a couple of shots to smooth everything over. 

The band’s security reluctantly agreed but Keith Richards, not wanting his photo taken, whipped off his belt and went after Dickerman with it. 

Ricci recalls saying, “OK, that's it. I don't care who you say you are. You're under arrest.”

As he cuffed Richards, Mick Jagger jumped him from behind shouting, “If you take him, you're taking me, too." And that’s exactly what Ricci did. 

By the end of it, Ricci had a dislocated shoulder 3 other men joined Jagger and Richards in custody. 

A Quick Release

Boston’s then-mayor Kevin White called the Warick Police and demanded the band’s arraignment be expedited so that they could come play the show. He was nervous the 15,000 restless fans would riot if they didn’t show up. 

While it took some persuading, the Warick Police agreed to quicken the process. 

By 11:30 PM all 5 suspects had been charged and were jumping in a limo to make their way to Boston with a police escort. 

In the meantime, Mayor Kevin White had taken the stage to tell the fans Keith Richards and Mick Jagger had been arrested but that he had sprung them and they were on their way. Stevie’s opening show was said to be one of the “longest in history” and reports share that White personally tried to keep the crowd calming and threw a football into the crowd to distract everyone. 

By 12:45 AM on July 19, 1972, The Stones were on stage where Jagger later exclaimed, “This place is better than Warwick.” 

The show ended at 2 Am with “Street Fighting Man.”

According to Joe Perry of Aerosmith, the show was “as amazing as you can imagine. And it was a combination of events that you just can’t orchestrate. It was the kind of thing that made The Stones what they are. I mean, the biggest rock-and-roll outlaws in the world get arrested and then make a mad dash to Boston with a police escort! And, I remember Mayor White throwing a football out into the crowd to keep everyone occupied. And, then, finally, they arrived: the street-fighting men with all the rock-and-roll lifestyle they had.”

RELATED: Did Mick Jagger steal "Just Another Night"?

Other Notable Rock Events From July 19

1954 - Elvis’ first single, “That’s All Right,” was released by Sun Records. 

1965 - The Beatles released Help! in the US. 

1967 - The Beatles top UK charts with “All You Need Is Love.”

1969 - Jimmy Buffet married Margie Washichek. 

1975 - “Listen To What The Man Said” by Paul McCartney & Wings tops the US charts. 

1976 - Deep Purple breaks up until 1984 when the classic lineup gets back together. 

1980 - Queen’s The Game goes to #1 in the UK making it their 3rd chart-topping single. 

1980 - Billy Joel’s “It's Still Rock and Roll To Me” tops the Hot 100 in the US. 

1981 - Roy Orbison Day is celebrated in Odessa, Texas. 

1985 - Joan Jett called Mike Tyson before his fight with Larry Sims. The ritual happens before every one of Tyson’s fights until February 11, 1990, which is also the night of Tyson’s first loss. 

1986 - Genesis goes to #1 with “Invisible Touch” on the US charts. 

1987 - Bruce Springsteen played in East Berlin. It was the first time he had performed behind the Iron Curtain.  

1989 - An action group, called “Roll The Stones Out Of Town,” was formed in Washington, Connecticut. Residents were unhappy with The Rolling Stones and their entourage for setting up in town. 

1989 - James Brown was moved to a tighter security prison after $40,000 in cash and cheques was found in jail cell. 

1991 - Steven Adler, who played drums for Guns N’ Roses, filed a suit that alleged the band had fraudulently removed him and introduced him to hard drugs. 

1995 - Dr. George Nichopoulous, Elvis’ former doctor, lost his medical license for being too liberal with addictive drug prescriptions.

1997 - Green Day plays a secret show performing as Nimrod.

1997 - Oasis’ “D’You Know What I Mean?” goes to #1 in the UK.  

2010 - Ozzy Osbourne and Tony Iommi settled a legal dispute over the use of the Black Sabbath band name. 

2013 - Pearl Jam played a sold-out show in Chicago. 

2022 - Queen became the first act with to reach 7 million UK charts sales with their 1981 Greatest Hits album. 

Rock Birthdays

1947 - Keith Godchaux of Grateful Dead (Piano)

1947 - Brian May of Queen (Guitar)

1947 - Bernie Leadon of Eagles (Guitar)

1952 - Allen Collins of Lynyrd Skynyrd (Guitar) 

On This Day In History - July 19

July 19 has witnessed some remarkable events in the history of rock music. These events continue to resonate with the passion, creativity, and enduring spirit of rock music. 

As we move forward, celebrate the events that have forever cemented July 19 as an unforgettable day in the annals of rock history.

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