Sacramento (USA), .- The Kings of Sacramento and the NBA have begun a joint investigation into allegations that the coach Luke Walton sexually assaulted a woman, according to information offered Thursday by the team.
The process will allow the Kings and the league to analyze the allegations contained in a civil lawsuit filed this week in Los Angeles by former sports commissioner Kelli Tennant.
According to the official statement of the Kings and the NBA, both sides began a joint investigation into the allegations contained in a civil suit filed Monday against the team’s coach, Walton, whom they hired on April 15 after he was fired. for the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Kings hired Sue Ann Van Dermyden, founding partner of law firm Van Dermyden Maddux, an expert in labor law with decades of experience in conducting investigations, and Jennifer Doughty, veteran researcher and associate attorney for Van Dermyden Maddux. They will lead the Kings research team.
The NBA’s research team will be led by Elizabeth Maringer, Senior Vice President and Deputy General Counsel, Integrity and Research. Prior to joining the NBA, Maringer served for 12 years as Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, including three as Deputy Chief of the Criminal Division.
The Kings and the NBA take these allegations very seriously and will collaborate to conduct a full and thorough investigation.
Walton’s attorney, Mark Baute, called the accusations “unfounded” and says the coach will prove it in court.
Tennant claims that Walton attacked her when she was assistant coach of the Golden State Warriors, which was from 2014 to 2016.
The former sports commentator said she trusted people at the time, but never filed charges because she was scared. His lawyer, Garo Mardirossian, admitted that due to the years that have elapsed, he believed that now it would be difficult to present a police report and put together a criminal case.
Tennant claimed that Walton continued to harass her after she became the coach of the Lakers and that she worked as a commentator in Los Angeles for Spectrum SportsNet and SportsNet LA. She now makes a wellness podcast.
The complainant has also acknowledged that she considered Walton, 39, the son of Hall of Famer Bill Walton, as an old friend and mentor.
The coach had written the prologue to a 2014 book she had published and went to give him a copy while Walton was in a hotel in Santa Monica during a trip of the Warriors to Los Angeles.
Tennant explained that Walton met her in the lobby and invited her to his room. After discussing the book, Tennant reported that Walton suddenly grabbed her, pinned her to the bed and kissed her by force. Tennant said that when she asked him to leave her “he laughed at me”.
The former sports commentator narrated that Walton gave in and she started to leave the room when he grabbed her again and kissed her ears and neck. She said she finally stopped, laughed and said “I’m glad I saw you” before she left. (EFE)