On Friday afternoon, Thabo Sefolosha released a statement about the result of the lawsuit, saying he was thankful for the support he received, and announcing he would be donating a “substantial portion” of the settlement to an Atlanta-based non-profit called “Gideon’s Promise” that helps train public defenders.
Nearly two years ago, Thabo Sefolosha was involved in a bizarre incident outside of a nightclub in New York in which he was arrested and left with a broken leg that caused him to miss the rest of the season. Later that year, in October, Sefolosha was acquitted of all charges. Via ESPN:
The guard-forward, who suffered a fractured right leg in the April 8 struggle with police, was accused of repeatedly disobeying the orders of officers telling him to leave the area around the club where another NBA player, Chris Copeland, had been stabbed.
Sefolosha testified that he moved off the block at the behest of a vulgar and confrontational officer and was trying to give a beggar a $20 bill when he was grabbed by officers and taken to the ground.
“They arrested him,” Sefolosha’s attorney, Alex Spiro, said in his closing argument. “They broke his leg out of eyeshot or earshot of an unrelated crime scene.”
He later announced he was suing the city, and Wednesday, he was awarded $4M to settle the case. Via the New York Daily News:
“This settlement is not a concession that Mr. Sefolosha was blameless in this matter and there was no admission of liability by the defendants,” the city Law Department said in a statement, “but in light of the gravity of his injuries, the potential impact on his career as a professional athlete and the challenge for a jury in sorting out the facts in this incident, the resolution of the case was in the best interests of the City.”
Sefolosha, of course, is still on the Hawks, but is injured at the current time, and has not played since March 24.