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Archive for Thursday, October 12, 2006

Pacers’ Jackson charged

Firing bullets in air deemed ‘reckless’ act

October 12, 2006

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— Stephen Jackson's apology wasn't enough.

The Indiana Pacers' guard was charged with a felony for criminal recklesness and misdemeanor counts of battery and disorderly conduct Wednesday by the Marion County prosecutor, five days after he fought with another group of men outside a strip club.

On Tuesday, Jackson apologized for the fight, saying he was "happy to be alive." His comments came hours after police arrested another man on several charges related to the fight.

Pacers president Larry Bird said Jackson was upset by the charges.

"He knows it's a major embarrassment for the franchise," Bird said. "This is a big blow for Stephen. He didn't expect this."

Teammates Jamaal Tinsley, Marquis Daniels and Jimmie Hunter were also at the club, but were not charged.

Jackson was hit by a car, and police say he fired a gun in the air at least five times.

"Firing the shots in the air at that point is criminal recklessness," Marion County prosecutor Carl Brizzi said. "Those bullets, once they come up, have to come down, and they come down at least 90 miles per hour, and they do absolutely have the ability to take someone's life."

Brizzi said between 30 and 35 people were in the parking lot.

Jackson was expected to be in court this morning to face charges. The felony count carries a prison term of six months to three years.

The charges were another setback for Jackson, who has struggled to shake off the effects of the 2004 brawl with Detroit Pistons fans at the Palace of Auburn Hills.

In September 2005, a judge in Michigan ordered Jackson to serve a year's probation for his role in the brawl, but the court ordered him to serve an extra year of probation. Jackson could be ordered to serve three months in jail if authorities there determine he has violated his probation.

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