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.

Just Posted

A pickleball debacle unfolds in Lake Country

Pickleball players and frustrated residents discuss the sport court

Backyard fundraiser raises over $40,000 for Foundry Kelowna, CMHA

‘The message was really about treating mental health like any other illness’

Kelowna man found guilty of second-degree murder awaits sentencing

A Kelowna jury found Steven Randy Pirko guilty of the second-degree murder in June

Kelowna cab driver charged with sexual assault

RCMP received a report May 28 alleging a taxi passenger had been sexually assaulted by a cab driver

Trial delayed for West Kelowna man charged with murdering his wife

Kevin Costin’s trial is on hold until the Crown and defence work out a few kinks

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

Fast-paced South Okanagan fundraiser guaranteed to thrill

Area 27 motorsports club members are offering the ride of a lifetime in support of OSNS

RCMP track down vehicle used in South Okanagan hit and run

Penticton RCMP are asking for any witnesses to a hit and run incident to come forward

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: cloudy, showers, thunderstorm risk expected

Environment Canada is calling for a risk of thunderstorms and showers across the Okanagan today

Wrestling legend finds his wedding dance groove in the South Okanagan

Professional wrestler Chris Jericho posted on social media that he was in Penticton recently

Lightning causes three wildfires east of Osoyoos

It is believed the fires started by a lightning storm

Backhoe ‘burned to a crisp’ in South Okanagan

South Okanagan fire chief said the situation could have been a lot worse

Air ambulance called to second collision on Highway 1 west of Salmon Arm

Emergency crews respond to motor-vehicle collision near Second Nations Road intersection

Crash closes Highway 1 near Tappen

The collision happened about 3:30 p.m. by James Road

Most Read