Boston Celtics second-year wing Jabari Bird is facing two new counts in his domestic violence case. According to court documents that were recently made public, Bird allegedly threatened to kill his girlfriend during the incident, which took place in September. Bird pleaded not guilty to the new charges. Via the Boston Globe:
Boston Celtics reserve guard Jabari Bird not only allegedly choked his girlfriend more than a dozen times during a reported act of domestic violence in September, but also repeatedly threatened to kill her, according to court documents in the case made public on Wednesday.
The documents were released after Bird, 24, pleaded not guilty in Brighton Municipal Court to two new counts of witness intimidation and threatening to commit a crime stemming from the same September incident.
Bird was arrested in September after an alleged domestic violence incident that took place in Brighton. After "being guarded" at St. Elizabeth's Hospital following the incident, Bird appeared in court.
Police said the incident occurred at Bird's girlfriend's apartment. Following an argument between the two, prosecutors say Bird "attacked the victim over the course of several hours." Via CBS Boston:
Boston Police said Bird was involved in a September 7 incident at his girlfriend's Brighton apartment.
Prosecutors allege that Bird strangled his girlfriend, a college student, to the point that she lost consciousness for a period of time. Police say she locked herself in the bathroom, and at one point in the alleged altercation she was hiding under a bed.
Bird attacked the victim over the course of several hours, prosecutors said, at times throwing her against a wall.
The Celtics issued a statement following Bird's court appearance:
Most importantly, our thoughts are with the victim of this incident. The Celtics organization deplores domestic violence of any kind, and we are deeply disturbed by the allegations against Jabari Bird. Pursuant to Domestic Violence Policy in the NBA's labor agreement, matters of this kind are handled by the League Office, not the team, and so the Celtics will be working with both the league and local authorities to assist in their ongoing investigations. The team will have no further comment at this time.
Bird also released a statement indicating that he would take time away from the team to sort out his issues.
I'm taking some time away from the team as I deal with my legal and medical issues. I apologize to my family, the Celtics organization, my teammates, the fans and the NBA for the unnecessary distraction that I have caused. The information that has been released does not tell the full story. I do not condone violence against women. I am hopeful that in due time and process, I will be able to regain everyone's trust.
The Celtics made Bird the 56th overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft out of Cal. He spent much of his rookie season with the team's G League affiliate, the Maine Red Claws, but agreed to a full-fledged NBA deal in late July after standing out both in the G League and in the Las Vegas Summer League.
While Bird will not be with the team, the rest of the Celtics' roster will be in action on Wednesday night when they face the Hornets (7:30 p.m. ET - Watch on FuboTV with NBA League Pass add-on ).