A Kent teenager led police to recovering New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s missing Super Bowl-winning jersey.
Brady’s jersey disappeared after the team’s 34-28 victory over the Atlanta Falcons in February. The FBI and NFL security announced weeks later the jersey was found in Mexico, along with a second jersey worn by Brady during the Patriots’ 2015 Super Bowl XLIV victory against the Seattle Seahawks.
Dylan Wagner, 19, of Kent was recently cleared by the FBI to share that he was the one who solved the mystery.
Wagner, an unapologetic Patriots fan in Seahawks country, came to the KIRO newsroom to talk about the discovery.
Wagner said he collects NFL uniform gear. Last year, Wagner sold a jersey to a collector in Mexico through eBay. The two shared photos of their collections.
Wagner explained items in one of the photos caught his eye.
“A Tom Brady jersey and a Joe Montana game-worn jersey, and the Tom Brady one in the Super Bowl 49 jersey when we faced the Seahawks,” he said. "If he sent me everything else in his collection I would have never questioned it, but just because of that one jersey, you know, I threw off the red flags.”
After the news of Brady’s stolen jersey broke, Wagner said he knew the collector had it.
The 19-year-old called Houston police, the NFL and the Patriots. No one took him seriously, until he sent an email to the Texas Ranger Division.
“Within, you know, that hour they called me back and they were like, ‘You know what you have is, you know, real information there,’” he said.
Wagner gave detectives the Mexico address for Martin Mauricio Ortega, who had an International Media Press Pass for February’s Super Bowl. Authorities found Ortega on security cameras carrying what’s believed to be Brady’s jersey under his arm.
Police raided Ortega’s home, but he has not been arrested. The jerseys were returned to Brady.