The Wizard of Pennsylvania Avenue

Sports Blotter: shooting at the White House edition
By MATT TAIBBI  |  August 23, 2006

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PRESIDENTIAL FOLLIES: Lonny Baxter is the first pro athlete accused of messing with the president since the Phillie Phanatic put Bush Sr.’s head in his mouth.
Lonny and J.R.
Bottom line: no one knows what the hell former Washington Wizard Lonny Baxter was doing last week when he allegedly fired his pistol out the window of his big-ass white SUV less than two blocks from the White House. All we know right now is that he remains in custody in the notorious DC jail, and that the Italian leagues will likely be missing one very stupid, undersize power forward this year.

No other NBA player has ever been arrested for discharging a weapon near the White House. In fact, there has never been a serious crime involving a professional athlete and the president of the United States, although there is anecdotal evidence that a sports mascot once put George Bush Sr.’s head in its mouth (legend attributable to the Phillie Phanatic). In this case, Baxter had apparently been drinking near DC’s Eye Club and was caught after a bystander heard shots near the presidential residence and described the vehicle to police. Two spent shell casings were found on the floor of Baxter’s Range Rover.

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Behind the shed
Here is a small matter for poor Danny Ainge to consider, as he steams toward a) Tony Allen’s upcoming court dates and b) another regular season armed with a roster of Paul Pierce and a bunch of high-flying 11-year-olds. An ugly little tale has popped up in South Texas news reports involving Clifton J. Ozen High School in Beaumont, Texas, better known in these parts as the last place promising-but-injured C’s center Kendrick Perkins went to school.

It seems one Tommy Floyd Granger, a former teacher’s aide and ninth-grade coach, along with Byron Bell, a former student, were arrested on charges of sexual assault of a child last week. The two were allegedly caught organizing what was known around the high school as the “3K Klub,” also known as the “Koochie Kissing Klick” — a high-school sex ring set up for the school’s older athletes. According to reports, Granger and Bell helped put upperclassman athletes together with freshman girls who would perform sexual services, notably oral sex. Says local detective John Boles: “I have no idea how long this has been going on, but we know this [3K] club has been around since at least 2001.”

Some Ozen football players were said to have been involved; there have been no allegations that any basketball players were involved in the ring.

Prophet in custody for sodomy
That was the headline in Ghana’s Public Agenda newspaper last week, in a sports story frankly too weird to leave out of this week’s column. It seems one Emmanuel Agokpa, a self-proclaimed “Prophet of the Church of Jesus,” was arrested in the Ghanian town of Dumse for raping five young soccer players. Local police spokesman Stephen Frimpong said that Agokpa was “able to reveal things from God to church members and cast out evil spirits from some of the members who were possessed.” Incidentally, he was also coach of the Odumasi village youth soccer team. Agokpa took the team camping before a game one night and, according to the paper, “authorized the boys to remove their pants before sleeping” before forcing himself on five of them. “He also allegedly licked others,” the paper said.

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