Archive for Friday, February 24, 2017

KU basketball player Josh Jackson charged in car vandalism case; Self says he won’t bench ‘great ambassador’ for KU

Kansas freshman Josh Jackson warms up prior to a game against Baylor, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017, at the Ferrell Center in Waco, Texas.

Kansas freshman Josh Jackson warms up prior to a game against Baylor, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017, at the Ferrell Center in Waco, Texas.

February 24, 2017, 11:11 a.m. Updated February 24, 2017, 4:29 p.m.

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University of Kansas basketball player Josh Jackson was charged Friday with one count of criminal damage to property for allegedly damaging a car outside a Lawrence bar in December.

Jackson is being issued a summons to appear in court for criminal damage to property of less than $1,000, a misdemeanor, Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson announced Friday.

Jackson’s court appearance, an arraignment, is set for 3 p.m. April 12 in Douglas County District Court, according to court records.

Jackson shared a statement on the matter Friday afternoon in an email sent to the Journal-World through a third party.

“I am very sorry that this whole situation occurred,” Jackson said in the typed statement. “I was trying to help a teammate and unfortunately the matter escalated. There were many other people involved and I have already offered to pay for any damage that I directly caused. I am anxious to resolve this and focus on school and basketball.”

Jackson will continue to play with the team, KU men’s basketball Coach Bill Self said Friday, in a statement. Self said he applied “the appropriate in-house discipline” immediately after and that the discipline would remain in house. Self didn’t elaborate on the nature of that discipline.

“I know Josh has regrets for his actions in this incident,” Self said. “He and I both know he could have exercised better judgment for this avoidable situation, but I’m pleased with how he’s accepted responsibility. This does not take away from the fact that he has been a great ambassador for this university. He will learn from this incident and be better for it.”

Jackson, 20, is KU’s top freshman, if not overall player. The 6-foot-8-inch guard from Detroit was a 2016 McDonald’s High School All American and has been named a Big 12 Newcomer of the Week six times this season, a record for first-year Jayhawks.

The Jayhawks’ next game is Saturday in Austin, against the University of Texas.

Jackson’s charge stems from a Dec. 9 argument that started at the Yacht Club, 530 Wisconsin St., and spilled outside.

A woman told police who arrived at the scene that the car she was driving had been damaged by “a known person and other unknown individual(s),” Branson said in a news release Friday. Investigating officers determined that the woman threw a drink on a male patron in the bar, then a friend of that patron — Jackson — followed the woman to her car at 545 Wisconsin St. and argued with her. During the argument, the woman’s car was damaged in several places.

Witnesses said they saw Jackson kick the driver’s door and a tail light, Branson said. The car sustained more damage than that, but witnesses at the scene “were unable to specifically identify other individual(s) that caused damage to the vehicle other than Jackson,” Branson said.

Total damage to the vehicle was estimated to be $3,150, according to Branson. Damage to the door and tail light was estimated to be $1,127.

Branson explained why Jackson was not charged with felony criminal damage, which is damage exceeding $1,000.

“The state can’t prove beyond a reasonable doubt that all the damage to the door and tail light were caused by Jackson due to other unidentifiable individual(s) damaging the vehicle,” Branson said.

Fellow KU basketball player Lagerald Vick is among witnesses listed in the court’s charging document against Jackson.

The Kansas City Star reported earlier this month that Vick and Jackson were both persons of interest in the vandalism case, citing “multiple sources.” Police did not confirm at the time that either man was involved, and did not answer a question Friday about Vick’s involvement.

“An affidavit has already been submitted to the DA’s office and therefore the Lawrence Police Department will not be providing any additional information regarding this case,” Lawrence police Sgt. Amy Rhoads said.

Cheryl Wright Kunard, assistant to the district attorney, said, in an email, that the court lists witnesses “necessary to file a case.” For another person to be charged, the court would need to receive additional investigative reports that named a new suspect, she said.

Other people listed as witnesses in the court document charging Jackson include three female KU athletes. One of them is the woman who was driving the car and reported the damage, according to the corresponding Lawrence police report.

That report, obtained by the Journal-World in January, indicates the incident happened about 2 a.m. Dec. 9 and lists estimated damage to the car at $2,991.

Criminal damage to property of less than $1,000 is a class B nonperson misdemeanor, according to court documents. A class B misdemeanor conviction is punishable by a fine and/or up to six months in jail, according to the Kansas sentencing statute.

— Sports editor Tom Keegan contributed to this report.

Comments

David Holroyd 5 months ago

Oh, what the heck. He's just a kid. Bill Self will overlook this and have him sit on the bench for a bit..and carry the dirty towels around for punishment.

After all, what University wants upstanding players? A local potentate in city government once told me, that the football team will get players that you would not want your daughter to date, but as long as they can punt so it goes. The same seems to be true with the basketball team.

And Mangino was considered to be mean to the players? Time again for a Mangino in all aspects of KU sports.

Snarky, over and out! 2/24/2017

Steve Jacob 5 months ago

"Just a kid" applies when you forget to pay a fine for a traffic ticket, not vandalizing cars.

Galen Gillaspie 5 months ago

The team is starting to look really good and is starting to look like a bunch of thugs, I have high hopes for every team that coach Self puts out there every year but these guys are starting to make the school look bad. Has the person in charge of keeping these players out of trouble fallen asleep on the job or what? This team seems to have more players in trouble than any past team that I can remember for a long time and we have more coming down the pike with the young girl involved at the hall where all the players stay. I know you are innocent until you are proven guilty but all these things make Kansas look bad. Somebody needs to get a grip on things and fast. Make all of us proud to say we are from Kansas and not be ashamed when some one ask about our team.

Jenny Hutchinson 5 months ago

He should have been charged with a felony. Any regular person would have been. This DA needs to be replaced. He bows down to KU.

Pius Waldman 5 months ago

What would you say if Jackson agrees to pay his share of the damage. The the lady and her father agree to drop the charges. Sounds like a great way to solve the problem. There are many things not pointed out that happened to cause her damage. If I was his attorney I would pursue that plan.

Will Babbit 5 months ago

What felony do you think he committed? Or should they just make one up?

Kristine Matlock 5 months ago

The $ value of the damage is supposed to be a felony.

Phil Minkin 5 months ago

What do you call a KU basketball player in a 3 piece suit? The defendant.

Jocelyn Kennedy 5 months ago

They were provoked, yes it was wrong but I can easily see how it played out. Popular people from all eras have been provoked and then only one side of the story told. It's just a little odd there are so many little instances so close together. These guys have big targets on their backs from those wanting to make us look bad. But I agree that there surely is a mentor of some kind watching out for these kids who has fallen off the job.

John Mack 5 months ago

What I don't understand is why Carlton Bragg was benched (playing privileges suspended) for possessing minor drug paraphernalia and Josh Jackson is not being benched for criminal damage to property. I understand why it is not in anyone's best interest to push felony charges and wholeheartedly agree that these young men should not be punished for their entire lives (by having a felony on their records) for making mistakes as young men. Yet surely there must be some consequences for actions such as these! Rick Pitino benched two of his players for coming in past curfew a few weeks ago in an important game that Louisville lost to send a message to the rest of his players that breaking team rules will not be tolerated. Has a similar message been sent to the members of the KU basketball team? Or is winning more important than everything else? Or do only players who are having bad years get punished while stars don't?

Jim Sullivan 5 months ago

"I know Josh has regrets for his actions in this incident. He and I both know he could have exercised better judgment for this avoidable situation, but I'm pleased with how he's accepted responsibility," Self said. "This does not take away from the fact that he has been a great ambassador for this university

A great ambassador ? 1 and done ! Oh Please, sounds as nutty as Trump.

John Brown 5 months ago

There seems to be a common theme, Yacht Club, Alcohol, News about player getting in trouble. This is why in MMA, the fighters with a real future don't if they're not getting paid. You think you're a pro yet you behave like and Amateur. They are one year away from being set for life. Self needs to set these guys up with a life coach when he brings them in. There are plenty of guys who've had it and blown it. These guys are one step from glory and one step from the gutter. Come'on Man!

Deb Engstrom 5 months ago

So why is this headline news? How many other 20 year olds have done things like this and worse. It's really none of our business.

Scott McFarland 5 months ago

For all you holier-than-though, do-gooders who have all lived sin free lives, you need to chill out. By all accounts Josh Jackson is a good young man, a good teammate, and a good person who happened to make a mistake. That does not excuse what he did, but he's taken responsibility for it and it's being handled by the legal system and his coach. That's really all we need to know. And for the record, I will match Coach Self and KU's basketball program with the best programs out there...especially Louisville and Pitino (to my knowledge we don't pay for strippers and sex for our BB recruits)!

Wayne Cook 5 months ago

So the incident took place on Dec. 9 and nothing happens or is said in the press. Most likely the other players and maybe staff and coaches know of the incident. And the games go on and he keeps playing. But according the the Kansas City Star report "KU coach Bill Self said he had already disciplined Jackson for his actions that led to the charge and called him “a great ambassador for the university. Jackson has started all 28 KU games this season. Since the incident, however, the women’s player who reported it has seen her minutes per game nearly cut in half." This must mean he has diplomatic immunity. Then after the 13th conference title is won the player is charged -- how unlucky for him. Jackson is scheduled to be arraigned in Douglas County District Court at 3 p.m. April 12, seven business days after the NCAA championship game -- how lucky for him.

Jenny Hutchinson 5 months ago

Good young man? He got rejected for a reason then he tried to beat up the girls car. Oh yeah he is a very good young man.

Scott McFarland 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Actually, I'll stand by what I said regarding Josh being a good young man. I don't know Josh from Adam. But, to my knowledge, he doesn't have the reputation of a trouble maker, and I'm a firm believer in not judging someone by one incident. I know a lot of very good people that would be catorgorized as a bad person if they were to be judged by one mistake. I prefer to assume the good in people. Now, if this becomes a pattern...I, of course, reserve the right to change my opinion.

John Mack 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Yes, but I don't think we can say this is just "one mistake." Think about what happened. A girl is sitting in a car and a 6'8" athletic young man is beating her car. This is more than just violence against property -- this was clearly violence against a woman. (I have a good friend that this happened to and she describes her experience as one of violation and utter fear. Stuck in a vehicle while a strong man is in attack mode.) And you add to that the violence this young woman had already experienced at the hands of Vick (as reported in the paper) and the issue becomes much more important. Young mistakes are things like bongs in bedrooms, missing too many classes, having too much to drink ... Violence against women is a much more serious issue and one that in 2017 should be addressed strongly and swiftly.

4 months, 4 weeks ago

KC Star is reporting the owner of the car and person who reported the incident is a member of the KU Women's basketball team. Also reports that she was benched for a number of games and has seen her minutes slashed since reporting the incident. It would be nice to have LJW look into the implications of this. It seems like KU is developing a reputation for intimidation and punishment of female athletes who don't look the other way when they are attacked by male KU athletes. It would be nice to get more details. Of course no one from University is willing to comment.

Jenny Hutchinson 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Rape, drug use, assaults, damage to property. You must be so proud Bill Self.

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