March 26, 2009, - 5:22 pm
By Debbie Schlussel
Now this is a “stimulus plan” I can believe in. And it’s a case I’ve written about before.
NBA thug-in-chief and, unfortunately, Detroit Piston Allen Iverson had his bodyguard beat up some guy who wouldn’t leave the VIP room of a Washington bar, and he stood idly by. He was sued, and he lost in court, with a $260,000 verdict against him. That’s the breaks when you act like a thug and pay another thug to carry out your own violent desires.
But major scumbag Allen Iverson wants a special form of justice where his repeated thuggishness gets a special break.
And fortunately, the U.S. Court of Appeals told him where to go.
NBA star Allen Iverson must pay $260,000 for standing idly by and watching his bodyguard beat up another man in a 2005 bar fight, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit rejected the Detroit Pistons guard’s attempt to throw out the verdict decided by a jury in 2007.
Bar patron Marlin Godfrey accused Iverson’s bodyguard, Jason Kane, of punching, kicking and hitting him with a bottle because he refused to vacate the VIP section at Washington club Eyebar to make way for the basketball star and his entourage. Godfrey suffered a concussion, a ruptured eardrum, a burst blood vessel in his eye, a torn rotator cuff, cuts and bruises, and emotional injuries.
A three-judge appeals court panel wrote that Iverson stayed out of the fray in the back corner of the VIP area, standing on a couch or bench and observing.
“The evidence in this case supported the jury’s finding that Kane attacked Godfrey in a fight that lasted several minutes, and that Iverson stood and watched without attempting to do anything to stop the beating,” the decision said.
Godfrey and another patron, David Anthony Kittrell, sued Iverson for $20 million, but the jury decided not to award punitive damages and only compensate Godfrey $10,000 for his medical bills and $250,000 for pain and suffering. The jury did not find either of the men liable for assaulting Kittrell.
Was it an excessive verdict? Judging from the injuries suffered by the man who was beaten up by Iverson’s henchmen, he was pretty badly torn up. In this rarest of cases, the judgment actually sounds very conservative.
Iverson got off easy here. And he’s had a pattern of violence and advocating violence, including this, which I wrote about back in 2004:
In 2000, Allen Iverson–the Philadelphia ’76ers star whose basketball skills helped him get away with a life of violence that included maiming others–made a rap CD, “Non Fiction,” urging the murder of gays and Black women.
Calling Black women “f—[ing] b—-es” and tramps, Iverson urged “Everybody stay fly; Get money, kill and f— b—-es.” His lyrics for gays was equally non-imaginative: “Get murdered in the second and first degree; Come to me with faggot tendencies; You be sleeping where the maggots be.” (I’m sure this hoops-Einstein spent all night trying to find a word that rhymes with “faggot.”)
As I’ve asked when I previously discussed this case,
If Allen Iverson–who has a history of violence and crime–is really “the Answer,” [his self-chosen appellation] I have to wonder what the heck the question was.