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'Shark Tank' Winner

WWE Star Made My Son Cry

DEMANDS APOLOGY

10/9/2012 5:30 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

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A mother will do anything to protect her kid -- just ask former "Shark Tank" winner Shelly Ehler ... who's picking a fight with a 6'5", 239-pound WWE star after he made her 8-year-old cry.

Ehler -- who scored a $75k investment on "Tank" for her ShowNo towels -- has a serious beef with Alberto Del Rio ... who snatched her son's handmade sign during a WWE event in Anaheim, CA this weekend ... and RIPPED IT UP (or at least tried to).

In the video (above) Del Rio isn't quite strong enough to rip the sign in half (it is cardboard) ... so he takes off small, pathetic, chunks instead.

FYI -- it's standard practice for the wrestlers to interact with audience members "in character." In this case, the sign was pro-Sheamus ... the wrestling arch-nemesis of Del Rio.

But TMZ spoke to Shelly, who says her 8-year-old was terrified by the wrestler's actions and instantly burst into tears. She adds, "Del Rio is a bully. I looked at him and said 'he's crying' ... and he mocked him."

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Shelly -- who says her 8-year-old cried all the way home -- vented her frustrations to the wrestler on Twitter and then fired off an angry letter to the WWE.

In the letter she says, "Take signs from adults NOT KIDS!  My son was bullied by your superstars and it is not okay."

Despite her demands, Shelly claims she's heard crickets from Del Rio -- but his manager tweeted her back and said, "lol blah blah blah."

FYI -- as soon as Shelly contacted Sheamus about the incident ... he immediately offered to send her son a signed photo and meet with him next time he's in town.

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7:15 AM PT -- A rep for the WWE tells TMZ ...“While Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez were portraying their WWE characters, we sincerely apologize for any misunderstanding that may have occurred.”

For more sports stories, check out tmzsports.com!
146 COMMENTS

No Avatar
16.

People Annoy Me    

It is wrestling and these "stars" are all pumped up, beefy, steroid raging wrestlers that love to put on a show to entertain.
Never liked WWE, Always hated WWE, Now I see why. In all honesty, who takes a sign made by an 8 year old and *tries* to rip it? Kinda of an A-hole move to make.

707 days ago
17.

Blue Lake    

Is she nuts? Has she ever watched a WWE event before? They should PAY a wrestler to honor a kid like that. Tell Mommy to grow up!

707 days ago
18.

SoWhat    

It's one thing to be in character and be an ass to an adult fan, they know what's going on. It's completely different when you're dealing with young kids and then to not say anything but have your "manager" go on twitter and keep the act going. All that says is that in real life you really are an ass and it's not an act.

707 days ago
19.

Mike    

The mom shouldn't be taking her kid to WWE in the first place - what a horrible example. What does she expect?

707 days ago
20.

Sir Boo    

That kid is 8? He looks like he's 4.

707 days ago
21.

latestdiets.net    

she probably wants to sue for $1 billion dollars like Dr. Evil.

707 days ago
22.

Phishie from Philly    

If it was a wrestler that the kid liked it wouldn't have been a big deal. He shouldn't have taken the sign from a kid but it is a wrestling match, not a baseball game. I think the mother should handle her son through this better. Rather than be mad at an actor who is paid to play a bad guy. Even still I don't want to see a kid cry so the WWE SHOULD hook up the boy and his mother anyway.
..

707 days ago
23.

Diana    

I think helicopter Mom needs to examine the definition of "bullying". Her little snowflake will survive this unscathed or would have if she hadn't turned this into a media event.

707 days ago
24.

Simone    

F*ck off mom, your kids gonna cry sometimes, get the f*ck over it

707 days ago
25.

Simone    

F*ck off mom.... your kids gonna cry sometimes. Get the f*ck over it.

707 days ago
26.

Nadine    

This women clearly has never seen a WWE show, it's their job to be the Villain/ good guy. I'm starting to think our children now a days are too sensitive. If the kid gets that upset about this he isn't mature enough to be watching the show. I grew up watching what was then WWF now WWE, if a bad guy would have ripped my sign up I would have loved it. I can't say I have watched the show lately ( since the Rock left) but a bad guy ripping up the sign should be the least of her worries,how about the bra and panty matches? It's parents like this that baby their children and want to blame the rest of the world for the way they turn out. Next time take him to Princess's on ice!

707 days ago
27.

sc1432    

This Mom needs to get over it..Wrestling is a SHOW and maybe your child at 8 years old is not old enough to be at wwe events.
These wrestlers are there to entertain, he was not going after your son personally...Your son had a sign of his enemy (Supposed) and Del Rio took the sign for that reason.
I do not believe he owes your son a apology at all..Del Rio was in character which happens not to be a good guy.
I think your son should stay away from live events or sit in a seat not so close to the action if he can't handle the interaction..
Maybe you should explain to him the fact that these wrestlers are playing a character and it is NOT really real.

707 days ago
28.

Sassy    

She's contacted WWE, the sign ripper, Seamus. Who's next? A reality show creator? A book publisher? It's a ripped sign. Explain it's all in good wrestling fun and buy the kid a Popsicle. Next!

707 days ago
29.

KR    

What a weak-willed piece of crap. Heels have been ripping up signs for decades now. Get the hell over it.

Why is TMZ posting about this non-story when CM Punk assaulted an innocent fan last night?

707 days ago
30.

Joan K    

Really, get over it lady. If you are going to take your son to this kind of entertainment make sure he knows what comes with it.

707 days ago
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