Police: Olowokandi wouldn't leave club

Updated: November 26, 2004, 9:11 AM ET
Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS -- Minnesota Timberwolves center Michael Olowokandi was arrested early Thursday after police used a stun gun to subdue him when he refused to leave a club.

Olowokandi, 29, was taken into custody about 3 a.m. after he refused to leave Tiki Bob's, said Indianapolis Police spokesman Sgt. Stephen Staletovich.

He was charged with disorderly conduct and criminal trespassing, both misdemeanors, Staletovich said.

The center was suspended by the team for Thursday night's game against the Indiana Pacers for "conduct detrimental to the team," Timberwolves general manager Jim Stack said in a statement.

Olowokandi was held overnight in an Indianapolis jail and released Thursday afternoon.

Staletovich said the club's manager asked police, who were investigating another call, to help him get the 7-foot Olowokandi to leave. He refused, and police shocked him twice with a stun gun until he complied and then took him into custody.

"We are extremely disappointed in Michael Olowokandi's actions last night," Stack said. "Regardless of how the incident escalated, he never should have been in that situation. The Minnesota Timberwolves do not condone this type of behavior or any actions that negatively impact our franchise."

Olowokandi is averaging 5.3 points and 5.2 rebounds this season.

Timberwolves point guard Sam Cassell said the situation would not distract the team.

"Distractions only happen on the court," Cassell said. "Michael's a human being. We support him. Let's not jump on him. Let's get all the facts first."

Stack alluded to the Pacers' brawl with Detroit fans last week in chastising Olowokandi. Ron Artest was suspended for the season, Stephen Jackson for 30 games and Jermaine O'Neal for 25 games for fighting with Pistons fans who threw drinks, popcorn, a chair and other debris at them.

"The heightened sensitivity to these types of issues in the league today make his actions even more disappointing," Stack said.


Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press