Sheffield Steelers player Matt Petgrave has been arrested for the manslaughter of Nottingham Panthers player Adam Johnson following his tragic death last month.
The 29-year-old American ice hockey star was reportedly killed after a skate slit his throat during a collision during a game against Sheffield Steelers on October 28, causing a fatal neck injury.
Around 8,000 fans watched in horror as attempts were made to save Johnson’s life as he lay bleeding on the ice at the Utilita Arena in Sheffield, protected by fellow players, before he later died from his injuries in hospital.
An inquest into Johnson’s death was opened last week, before being adjourned until January 2024.
South Yorkshire Police have released a statement confirming the man remains in police custody following his arrest on Tuesday.
A man has been arrested on manslaughter charges following the death of Adam Johnson
The 29-year-old (pictured with his partner Ryan Wolfe) died from a fatal neck injury after an on-ice collision
South Yorkshire Police confirmed that Matt Petgrave remains in police custody following his arrest on Tuesday
A statement shared on Tuesday read: ‘Detectives today (Tuesday 14 November) arrested a man on suspicion of manslaughter. He currently remains in police custody.
‘On Saturday 28th October, Adam, aged 29, was seriously injured during a match between Nottingham Panthers and Sheffield Steelers and sadly died later in hospital. A post-mortem examination revealed that he died as a result of a fatal neck injury.”
In a statement to the Yorkshire positionDetective Chief Superintendent Becs Horsfall said police had carried out “extensive investigations” in the aftermath of the tragedy.
“Our investigation began immediately after this tragedy and we have since conducted extensive research to piece together the events that led to the loss of Adam in these unprecedented circumstances.
‘We have spoken to highly specialist experts in their fields to help us with our investigations and continue to work closely with Sheffield City Council’s health and safety department, who are supporting our ongoing investigation.
“Adam’s death has sent shockwaves through many communities, from our local residents here in Sheffield to hockey fans around the world. We know that these communities expect us to treat this investigation with the same professionalism, fairness and sensitivity as any other investigation and request that members of the public refrain from comment and speculation that could hinder this process.
“Our thoughts remain with all those affected by this devastating incident as investigations continue.”
On 5 November, Nottingham Forest paid a moving tribute to the player during their draw against Aston Villa, with a minute’s applause at the Forest Ground in the 47th minute.
Johnson (ringed), seen seconds before the bizarre incident at the Nutita Arena in Sheffield on October 28
The Minnesota-born former NHL star was buried last week in his hometown of Hibbing
Nottingham Forest applauded the player for a minute during the Premier League match against Aston Villa
Hundreds of flower arrangements have been left at Motorpoint Arena in Nottingham in recent days
Fans gathered to sign a book of condolence for Johnson’s family in the wake of the tragedy
About 8,000 people were at the Panthers versus Sheffield Steelers match when the accident occurred
The number was chosen to match the shirt worn by Johnson for the Panthers, and in the same minute Forest’s Orel Mangala scored as all four supporters were in the stands to pay tribute to Johnson.
The Minnesota-born star – who previously played in the NHL for the Pittsburgh Penguins – was also remembered on the same day at Motorpoint Arena in Nottingham, home of the Panthers.
Fans, players and staff gathered to pay floral tributes and sign a book of condolence for Johnson’s family.
The club will host an ‘Adam Johnson Memorial Match’ against Manchester Storm on Saturday.