NBA player injured in NYPD struggle to file $50m lawsuit against city and police

NBA Basketball

The attorney for Atlanta Hawks guard Thabo Sefolosha reportedly said his client will file a $50m lawsuit against the city of New York and eight police officers who arrested him in April.

Sefolosha suffered a broken leg in the incident causing him to miss the remainder of the NBA season and the playoffs.

The New York Post reported that Sefolosha filed a complaint with the city’s comptroller claiming his injuries suffered during the arrest are “permanent in nature and continuing into the future”.

“Unfortunately he may not be dunking as much as he was before this happened,” the guard’s attorney Alex Spiro told the Post.

On 9 October, a Manhattan court found Sefolosha not guilty on three misdemeanor charges of obstructing government administration, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. He had been arrested outside a New York nightclub 1Oak following a fight that left another NBA player Chris Copeland with stab wounds. Police said Sefolosha had resisted orders to move away from the crime scene. He testified that he had moved away after being ordered to do so and was arrested by an officer while he tried to give $20 to a man begging for money.

A scuffle ensued and Sefolosha was injured. His attorneys have said he was racially profiled by police who were physically and verbally abusive.

Prosecutors offered a plea deal in which Sefolosha would spend one day doing community service, but the player demanded the trial.

Now he will reportedly sue, though it may be hard for him to prove permanent damage given he is playing again for the Hawks. In three pre-season games he has scored 18 points in 41 total minutes, statistics that are consistent with his career averages.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Les Carpenter, for theguardian.com on Wednesday 21st October 2015 20.16 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010