Browns Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown claims a 1964 NFL championship ring listed for sale in an online auction was stolen from him more than 40 years ago.
The ring listed on Lelands.com has received four bids. The highest offer was $33,275. The auction is scheduled to end at 9 p.m. July 25, according to the website.
“It was stolen from me many years ago, in the late 1960s,” Brown, a special adviser for the Browns, told the St. Paul Pioneer Press today. “I’m surprised to hear that it’s publicly for sale because whoever got it should know that I didn’t give it up.’’
The following excerpt from the listing on Lelands.com paints a different picture: “The ring was obtained directly from a Brown immediate family member and sold by Lelands.com in 1998. During that original auction preview, Jim Brown himself inspected the ring and acknowledged its authenticity. … The provenance and chain of title is well-documented: Jim Brown to family member to Lelands to Cleveland Sport Collection auction buyer back to Lelands.com and now to you.”
A spokesman for Lelands said the company would release a statement in response to Brown's side of the story. As of 9:30 p.m. today, no statement had been released.
Brown told the Pioneer Press that he believes a police report was filed after the theft. He insisted he didn’t know the ring was listed for sale.
“I’m going to see what I can do about it,” Brown said.