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Archive for Tuesday, July 24, 2001

Ewing describes sexual favors at club

July 24, 2001

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— Patrick Ewing testified Monday that he was twice provided with sexual favors at the Gold Club while the club's owner and manager watched.

Ewing, who signed with Orlando last week, said he had visited the Atlanta strip club about 10 times, and was given special attention when owner Steve Kaplan and manager Thomas "Ziggy" Sicignano were present.

Later, a former stripper testified under a plea agreement that she performed sex acts or witnessed other dancers performing sexual acts on celebrities, including former NFL MVP Terrell Davis and Philadelphia's Dikembe Mutombo.

Ewing said he first visited the club in 1996 when he was in Atlanta for the Olympics. The NBA star was escorted to a VIP room and Kaplan and Sicignano, who was later fired, came in to meet him.

"The girls danced, started fondling me, I got aroused, they performed oral sex," Ewing said. "I hung around a little bit and talked to them, then I left."

Ewing said he did not pay for the sex or anything else at the club. "I was told it was taken care of," he said.

Under cross-examination by Kaplan's attorney, Steve Sadow, Ewing testified he never felt that he was involved in an act of prostitution.

Ewing said his second Gold Club sexual encounter was in 1997 or 1998. He said either Kaplan or Sicignano told the women to "go ahead and take care of him." He said the two sat beside him while the dancers performed oral sex on him.

Ewing said the men also offered to have a dancer accompany him to his hotel for sex, but he declined.

He testified for about 25 minutes and then immediately left the courthouse. He did not testify about any other players having sex with dancers.

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