Raptors president Masai Ujiri accused of assaulting sheriff’s deputy in Oakland

Former NBA executive of the year then allegedly pushed a deputy out of the way to get on the court

Moments after the Raptors won their first NBA championship, team president Masai Ujiri allegedly assaulted a local police officer at Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif., the sheriff’s office said Friday.

A spokesman for the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office said Ujiri was making his way to the court to celebrate his team’s historic win over the Golden State Warriors on Thursday when he was stopped by a sheriff’s deputy and asked for his credentials.

READ MORE: Go, Canada! Raptors beat Warriors 114-110 to win NBA title

“This deputy had no idea who (Ujiri) was,” Sgt. Ray Kelly said in a phone interview.

Ujiri didn’t have the credentials on him, Kelly said, adding that the former NBA executive of the year then allegedly pushed the deputy out of the way in an effort to get on the court.

“Our deputy pushed the man back and told him he couldn’t go onto the court,” Kelly alleged. “At that point, the gentleman pushed our deputy again, and during that push his arm struck our deputy in the jaw.”

He said at that point, NBA security intervened and Ujiri was able to get onto the court. A local television station, NBC Bay Area, shared video from the immediate aftermath of the alleged incident that appears to show another man separating the deputy from Ujiri, who is then led onto the court by Raptors guard Kyle Lowry.

Kelly said that rather than arrest Ujiri on international television, the department decided to take the “high road” and file a misdemeanour complaint to local prosecutors. He said the officer was not seriously injured in the alleged incident, but did complain of pain in his jaw.

Asked about the appearance of a well-known executive being held back from celebrating a historic win with the team he built, Kelly said optics were of no concern.

“There is a credentialling policy that the NBA has in place. Everybody from the top executives all the way down … know that you must wear credentials to get on the court,” he said.

“We would expect more from a team president.”

A spokeswoman for the Raptors said they were co-operating with the U.S. authorities and looked forward to resolving the situation. The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Pedestrian struck in late-night collision on Highway 1 in Hope

RCMP were on scene at the incident near Flood Hope Road where traffic was rerouted for eight hours

Chilliwack teachers and EAs concerned with health and safety plans

As schools get ready to open, many worry measures won’t be enough to protect students from COVID-19

New executive director for Fraser Valley Child Development Centre

Karen Dickenson Smith succeeds Karen McLean, who has retired after 22 years

Mission prison COVID-19 outbreak declared over

Dr. Bonnie Henry hails work done to halt outbreak, which saw more than 130 people contract COVID-19

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

New platform allows readers to make a one-time or ongoing donation to support local journalism

Feds looking at ways to reunite families amid COVID-19 border restrictions with U.S.

Some families with members of dual-citizenship have become separated due to the pandemic

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

New platform allows readers to make a one-time or ongoing donation to support local journalism

‘Took about three minutes to kill’: Langley man finds Asian giant ‘murder hornet’ inside bedroom

The extra-large invasive insect had been first discovered in Brookswood on Thursday, May 28

Police watchdog recommends charges against five Mounties in Prince George man’s death

Police used pepper spray on the man, who then had trouble breathing before dying at the scene

B.C. tourism seeks relief as businesses wait for COVID-19 restrictions to ease

Mid-June earliest for more in-province travel to be authorized

Reward for info on trapped raccoon rises to $6,000

Activists have donated to try to find whoever laid a trap in Delta

Man last seen walking out of Royal Columbian Hospital found dead

It is unclear how or why Gavin Deloes was able to leave the New Westminster hospital

VIDEO: Humpback whales put on quite a show

The ‘playful’ pod lingered by a Campbell River tour operator’s boat for quite some time

Large cruise ships barred from Canadian waters until end of October: Garneau

Last year 140 cruise ships brought more than two million visitors to Canadian ports

Most Read