Wizards’ Arenas sentenced

March 27, 2010


— Suspended Washington Wizards standout Gilbert Arenas was ordered Friday to spend 30 days in a halfway house for his conviction on gun charges stemming from a locker-room confrontation with a teammate.

District of Columbia Superior Court Judge Robert E. Morin also sentenced Arenas to 400 hours of community service, which cannot be conducted at basketball clinics, and a $5,000 fine.

Arenas apologized in court, saying, “Every day, I wake up wishing it did not happen.”

Arenas pleaded guilty to violating the city’s gun laws in a Dec. 21 incident at Verizon Center. Following an argument over an unpaid gambling debt totaling a few hundred dollars, Arenas brought several guns to the team locker room and put them near Javaris Crittenton’s locker with a sign telling him to “PICK 1.”

“The evidence is that both of you felt disrespected,” Morin told Arenas. “Rather than acting like mature adults, you escalated the incident” by bringing guns to practice.

After sentencing, Arenas’ lawyer, Ken Wainstein, said he was pleased with the outcome.

“Judge Morin’s decision was fair and measured; it reflected a deep understanding of the relevant facts ... Mr. Arenas is grateful to the court and looks forward to serving the community and once again being a force for good in the District of Columbia,” Wainstein said in a statement.

In court papers, prosecutors said Crittenton had a legitimate reason to believe Arenas’ threat was genuine.

Prosecutors had wanted Arenas to go to jail for at least three months. They said he lied repeatedly about why the guns were in the locker room and tried to cover up what had happened. They also said he knew bringing guns into D.C. was illegal and has a prior gun conviction.


Djokovic exits early

Key Biscayne, Fla. — Former champion Novak Djokovic lost his opening match at the Sony Ericsson Open to Olivier Rochus, 6-2, 6-7 (7), 6-4, on Friday.


Arrest made in FIU case

Miami — Miami-Dade police have arrested the man they say killed Florida International University running back Kendall Berry.

Twenty-two-year-old Quentin Rashad Wyche turned himself in Friday night.

Investigators say the pair got into an argument Thursday night just outside the front doors of the campus recreation center, where the football team and other FIU athletes train.

Police say Wyche pulled out an unknown sharp object and stabbed Berry.

Players support Meyer

Gainesville, Fla. — Florida quarterback John Brantley and teammates are applauding coach Urban Meyer’s recent outburst, saying it’s nice to see him come to receiver Deonte Thompson’s defense.

Meyer lashed out at a reporter Wednesday, calling him a “bad guy” for publishing a quote from Thompson about Brantley and former Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow.

When asked what the difference was between Brantley and Tebow, Thompson called Brantley a “real quarterback.”

Meyer had harsh words for Orlando Sentinel reporter Jeremy Fowler during a brief exchange in front of cameras, colleagues and some fans.

Houston lineman dismissed

Houston — Houston right tackle Jarve Dean has been dismissed from the squad for a violation of team policy. Dean is the third player to be dismissed from the team in recent months after freshman kick returner A.J. Dugat and sophomore offensive lineman Ari Tatum were let go in late February for unspecified reasons.


Twins’ Nathan has surgery

Sarasota, Fla. — The Minnesota Twins say closer Joe Nathan has had Tommy John surgery. Nathan had the surgery on Friday. Doctors removed a tendon from his left wrist and placed it in Nathan’s right elbow to replace the ulnar collateral ligament that was torn in an exhibition game on March 6.

The All-Star will miss the entire 2010 season. Nathan set a career high and a franchise record with 47 saves last season.


Batch stays with Steelers

Pittsburgh — Charlie Batch has signed a two-year contract to remain with the Pittsburgh Steelers as a backup quarterback. The 35-year-old Batch has been under contract with the Steelers for eight seasons, although he sat out 2004 and 2008 with injuries. He has thrown only two passes since 2007, and 135 overall during his time with Pittsburgh.


Els tied for Palmer lead

Orlando, Fla. — Ernie Els was like so many others Friday at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. He was tied for the lead, and not quite sure how he got there.

Els had to play out of the water to save par on the sixth and steady his round of 3-under 69. Davis Love III didn’t make a par over the first nine holes and shot 71. Ben Curtis started his round of 67 with two straight bogeys. D.J. Trahan had a 68 to join them in a four-way tie for the lead at 7-under 137.

One shot behind was Phil Mickelson, who is starting to find his putting stroke at just the right time.

Price, Beck share lead

Cap Cana, Dominican Republic — Nick Price and Chip Beck shot 6-under 66s to share the first-round lead in the Cap Cana Championship, leaving Fred Couples a stroke back in his bid for his third straight Champions Tour title.

Seo surges into lead

Carlsbad, Calif. — Hee Kyung Seo, playing on a sponsor’s exemption, shot a 5-under-67 on Friday to take the lead while Michelle Wie also shot a 67 to pull into contention after two rounds in the inaugural Kia Classic at La Costa.


Qualifying rained out

Martinsville, Va. — For the third year in a row, qualifying for the spring race at Martinsville Speedway was rained out Friday, and the field was set by point standings.

Kevin Harvick and Matt Kenseth gained the front row for Sunday’s race, followed by Jimmie Johnson and Greg Biffle. Tony Stewart and Kurt Busch will start in the third row.


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