Atlanta Hawks forward Thabo Sefolosha and his former teammate Pero Antic are filing civil suits against the New York Police Department almost a year after their arrest outside a NYC nightclub, a source close to the proceedings told ESPN’s Kevin Arnovitz.
Sefolosha, who suffered a broken fibula and ligament damage during the arrest, is expected to be file a suit against the NYPD and other city agencies next week. His charges include unlawful force, unlawful arrest and malicious prosecution, the source told Arnovitz. Antic’s civil suit, which was filed Friday, claims false arrest, unlawful imprisonment, assault, battery, negligence, civil rights violations and malicious prosecution. Sefolosha and Antic filed notices of claim last year amounting to a maximum of $50 million and $25 million, respectively.
“The NYPD has all but conceded that they falsely and improperly arrested Pero Antic,” Alex Spiro, Antic’s attorney, said. “They will now be held responsible.”
Things seem to be going alright — at least, legally speaking — for Sefolosha and Antic since the April 8, 2015 incident, when both men were arrested for allegedly interfering with a crime scene. Charges against Antic (disorderly conduct, obstructing governmental administration and second-degree harassment) were dropped in September, and a jury acquitted Sefolosha in October. The lesson: if you’re going to wrongfully arrest citizens, make sure they’re not NBA players.