The Red Wings fan accused of trying to light a giant Lightning flag on fire during last night’s Game 7 might have gotten off—or at least might not still be in jail right now—if she hadn’t thrown her lighter at police, according to a source familiar with the details of the confrontation.

Lena Sinishtaj, 35, from Sterling Heights, Mich., was arrested on a charge of first-degree arson of an occupied structure after she allegedly held a lighter to a 20’-by-30’ Lightning flag being passed around the Amalie Arena crowd during the pregame ceremony. Her arrest record on the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office website can be viewed here.


Reader Bobby (@3rdandnole) was sitting right behind a group of Red Wings fans in section 130, and captured this brief video of a female fan, who police say is Sinishtaj, attempting to ignite the flag:

Another arena source familiar with Sinishtaj’s arrest told us that when security and police responded to the section, she escalated the confrontation. Sinishtaj was probably going to be merely ejected from the arena, the source said, before she threw the lighter at cops—and it’s now being held as evidence against her.


The flag was scorched, but did not catch fire. Which is great news, because according to police, about 200 fans were under it at the time.