We must sadly report that the diminutive Diff'rent Strokes star is indeed wanted for questioning by Los Angeles-area police after allegedly slugging a female fan Thursday.
The 30-year-old Coleman, now employed as a security guard, was shopping for a bulletproof vest in a Hawthorne, California, uniform store, when he was accosted by an autograph hound.
The fan asked Coleman for his John Hancock, and the actor complied, signing his name on a slip of paper, according to the shop manager. The autograph-seeker, identified as Tracy Fields by police, then asked Coleman to write another, longer message for her son.
That's when Coleman allegedly snapped, accusing the woman of giving him "attitude." He handed her back the paper and made a racial slur, Lt. James McInerny of the Hawthorne police said.
"She [then] made a comment about his acting ability and he punched her right in the eye," the officer said. Coleman reportedly continued pummeling the woman until an off-duty cop who was also in the store pulled them apart.
Police are now looking for Coleman. They want his side of the story before deciding whether to file assault and battery charges against the onetime child celeb. He has until Friday afternoon to turn himself in.
Once the highest-paid kid on TV, Coleman saw his star fizzle with the cancellation of Diff'rent Strokes in 1986. He currently runs an arcade in Pasadena, California, and works as a mall security guard. He's also trying to resuscitate his acting career.
His TV siblings haven't fared too well in their post-Strokes lives, either. Bro Todd Bridges has been arrested on drug and assault charges and, in 1989, was acquitted of attempted murder. Sis Dana Plato's rap sheet includes arrests for forging Valium prescriptions and for robbing a video store with a toy gun. Both have since undergone drug rehabilitation