Thursday October 29th, 2015

Atlanta Hawks swingman Thabo Sefolosha has provided a first-person account to GQ of the incident where his ankle was broken by New York police. 

Sefolosha was arrested in April outside a New York nightclub and suffered a broken fibula and several torn ligaments in the process. He was charged with obstructing governmental administration, refusing to clear the area of a crime scene, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct but was found not guilty on all charges earlier this month. 

In his GQ account, Sefolosha recounts the events leading up to the moment several officers forced him to the ground.

“Somebody kicked my leg, more than once, from the back to force me to the ground,” Seflosha wrote. “I knew something had happened as soon as they did it; I'm an athlete, so I know how my body should feel.”

Sefolosha was held in a police precinct for 12 hours before he could receive medical attention. The injury forced him to miss the rest of the season, including Atlanta’s playoff run. 

He also wrote about the stress the incident caused.

“I had nightmares. I would wake up sweating in the middle of the night,” Sefolosha said. “I was dreaming not necessarily of that exact moment but more of the whole feeling about it—half scared, half nervous. It felt like I had been just one wrong move away from something much more serious happening. It was a long summer for me. I had nights where I came back after watching the team play, just feeling defeated and angry that all this had happened, and for no reason.”

Sefolosha, who calls the incident “an act of police brutality” in the GQ piece, plans to file a civil rights lawsuit.

- Dan Gartland

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