Report: Donaghy injured in prison

Updated: June 11, 2009, 8:05 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy was attacked by a fellow inmate during his 15-month sentence in federal prison, the Los Angeles Daily News reported Thursday.

Pat Zaranek, a spokesman for Donaghy, told The Associated Press on Thursday that the former referee, serving a 15-month sentence in a gambling scandal, was struck in the right knee with a "paint-rolling stick" in November.

Zaranek, of Executive Prison Consultants, says Donaghy expects to be transferred from the camp in Pensacola, Fla., to a halfway house in Tampa next week.

After repeated visits to the prison's medical facility, Donaghy underwent an MRI exam that showed a tear of the lateral meniscus, as well as a cyst, a source close to Donaghy told the Daily News. Donaghy was denied treatment and told by a doctor that his injury was a "congenital" condition, the source said.

Zaranek says Donaghy's knee still gives him trouble and that he will need surgery.

A Federal Bureau of Prisons spokeswoman declined comment.

Donaghy is still due to be released from government custody on Oct. 24, a prison administrator told ESPN.

Donaghy, who was convicted of gambling on games, pleaded guilty in a New York federal court in 2007 on charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and transferring betting information through interstate commerce.

A second source said Donaghy will seek help for his gambling addiction once he's released, according to the report.

"In prison, they have treatment for drug addiction and alcohol addiction, but not for gambling," the second source said, according to the report. "And all they do there is play cards."

His brother Jim Donaghy, who was able to visit his brother only once during his sentence, said he believes his brother "could turn this into a positive thing," according to the Daily News. "I want to stress his remorse, not only to his family but to everybody -- young kids, everybody he let down," he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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