Five-time Wing Bowl champion and Woodbury Heights native Bill “El Wingador” Simmons has been arrested on cocaine distribution charges, New Jersey State Police Lt. Stephen Jones announced Tuesday.
Simmons was caught with $8,000 worth of powdered cocaine and more than $4,000 in cash in his 2010 Kia Soul when State Police detectives stopped him Friday evening, June 15, in Harrison Township, Jones said.
Immediately following the car stop, state troopers and investigators from the Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office (GCPO), part of a joint investigation by the State Police Drug Trafficking South Unit and the GCPO, executed two search warrants at two Woodbury Heights homes with a connection to Simmons, Jones said.
Simmons was charged with first-degree distribution of drugs and was placed in the Gloucester County jail on default of $100,000 full cash bail.
Simmons’ car, which was decorated with a vehicle wrap touting his Wing Bowl nickname, was seized pending forfeiture, Jones said.
“It is regrettable that Mr. Simmons’ notoriety has taken a negative turn,” said Gloucester County Prosecutor Sean F. Dalton. “However, the Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office works closely with other law enforcement agencies to stop the significant distribution of controlled dangerous substances that is reflected in the charges against him.”
Best known for his performances at Wing Bowl, the annual chicken wing eating competition in Philadelphia, Simmons won five titles before retiring, only to come back after several years and make another go of it last year.
—by a single wing—to Jonathan “Super” Squibb in 2011, and . Simmons announced his retirement for good after this year’s competition.
Simmons, a former truck driver, had sold a line of sauces and licensed El Wingador wings through Swedesboro-based Rastelli Foods. Simmons' website, elwingador.net, was listed as expired as of May 27.
Simmons could be in court Friday morning, if he or his attorney requests a bail hearing by Wednesday, GCPO spokesman Bernie Weisenfeld said.