From the Indianapolis Star: Indiana Pacers forward Shawne Williams did not assist a man arrested near his home Wednesday on a murder warrant and did not invite him to be a house guest, the player's attorney said.
"We've got to do the things necessary to get back the public trust and get fans supporting our team," Pacers President Larry Bird told the media today.
Williams was not at practice today and will not play Friday at Toronto, CEO Donnie Walsh said. Walsh said Williams wasn't suspended and will be paid.
"It wasn't Shawne's decision (to not practice or play)," Walsh said. "We told him to take care of the issues he's involved in right now.
Williams' lawyer John L. Tomkins released this statement today regarding Williams' role in Wednesday night's arrest of Gary Ian Bohannon, whom police wanted for murder in Tennessee:
"Shawne Williams wants to make it clear that the individual taken into custody by police during the Pacer game with the Chicago Bulls on February 27th was not a house guest of Mr. Williams. The individual arrived at Mr. Williams home after Shawne had departed to participate in the Bulls game, and Mr. Williams was unaware of his presence until notified by the police that an arrest had been made. Mr. Williams did not invite this individual to either visit or stay at his home. Mr. Williams wants to make it clear that he has cooperated with the police in their investigation of this man and he will continue to honor their requests. As a result, it would be entirely inaccurate to assert in any way that Shawne assisted the person who is now in custody."
Bird said such incidents drag the team down. "We've got to get all the information but we've got to be very clear on this: We don't want our players hanging around with murderers," Bird told reporters this afternoon at Conseco Fieldhouse.
The murder suspect, Gary Ian Bohanon, 20, Memphis, Tenn., was arrested about 6 p.m. on the Northeastside after he left Williams' home in the 4700 block of River Ridge Drive, according to a written statement from Sgt. Paul Thompson, spokesman for the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department. The arrest warrant was out of Memphis.
Memphis police said Bohanon was wanted for first-degree murder in the shooting death of Ronald Moore. Moore, 22, was shot about 9:30 p.m. Oct. 17 inside a Memphis auto repair shop where he worked and died at the scene, said Detective Monique Y. Martin, spokeswoman for the Memphis Police Department.