<
>

Security guard alleges Nextel Cup driver shoved him

12/19/2007 - NASCAR

MIAMI -- Kasey Kahne is due in court Jan. 8 to answer charges of misdemeanor
battery stemming from a Nov. 16 incident in which the NASCAR
driver allegedly shoved a security guard to the ground at Homestead-Miami
Speedway.

The maximum sentence
for misdemeanor battery is one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Rick Russell, president of
Gillett Evernham Motorsports, said the team supports its driver.

"The alleged action in this case is not consistent with the
Kasey Kahne we know," Russell said. "It is unfortunate the issue
has progressed to this point. We support our driver, Kasey Kahne,
and have complete confidence in the legal process."

Archibald Hutchinson and a Monroe County deputy sheriff stopped a golf
cart carrying Kahne and his brother as they attempted to enter the
motorhome lot at Homestead, and asked for credentials. Kahne was
wearing a driver suit.

"One of the occupants of the vehicle wearing a bright-colored
jumpsuit became belligerent and refused to produce ID," Hutchinson
said in his police report.

Hutchinson claimed Kahne used profane language and then pushed
his brother's foot off the accelerator pedal of the golf cart,
attempting to drive past. The guard claims Kahne then got out of
the golf cart and "without saying another word shove[d] me with
great force from which I landed on my back and left shoulder on the
entrance pavement."

Kahne's brother, Kale, disputed the events in his statement to
police. Kale Kahne said his brother did not have a credential
because he'd just finished practice.

"He [Kasey] said, 'I am going to walk to my motor home then,'"
Kale Kahne wrote. "One guard got in front of Kasey and grabbed him
and said that you are not going anywhere. ... Kasey pushed his
hands off of him. The guard lost balance and fell to the ground."

Four witnesses, all law enforcement officers, gave statements
that supported Hutchinson and accused Kahne of shoving the guard.

Hutchinson was treated and released from the track's infield
care center.

Kahne is also facing a civil suit from Hutchinson.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.