Jared Sullinger, the Celtics forward, has been arrested for domestic-violence related charges, after a dispute with his girlfriend. It was alleged that he repeatedly pinned his girlfriend to a bed and then the floor. Officers were called to Sullinger's residence on Saturday night by his girlfriend, Deann Smith. She told the police that he had assaulted her earlier in the day after accusing her of cheating on him and then started to pack her things. This just escalated things more and he continued to get more aggressive.
After losing Sullinger to an injury at the end of last season, they need to have him around in this season, and preferably free of drama. Sullinger is certainly a key piece in the rebuilding stage of the Celtics franchise, after trading away their all-star players Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce. He is only 21 years old and just enjoyed success as a rookie with the Celtics, before injuring his back near the end of the season. The team released a statement on Tuesday afternoon, following his arrest. According to ESPN, the statement said "The Celtics were disappointed to learn of the allegations against Jared and are currently gathering more information on the situation, which we are taking very seriously."
Sports Illustrated stated that Sullinger took a pre-scheduled flight to Ohio shortly after the incident. The warrant for his arrest came shortly after, and he was forced to return. Waltham, Massachussets police issued a warrant for his arrest, and he decided to turn himself in on Tuesday morning. Later that day, he appeared in court and pleaded not guilty. Bail was set at 5,000 and he paid the plea and is a free man already. He appeared in Waltham District Court, where he pleaded not guilty to charges of assault and battery, destruction of property and the obstruction of a witness. He is scheduled to appear in court again on September 19.
Sullinger did issue an apology on behalf of the team, where he discussed the sorrow and embarrassment that incident brought on himself as well as his girlfriend and the Boston Celtics organization. An incident like this will not looked in the eyes of his teammates or his fans in the off-season. He has spent much of this off-season in rehab already, and needs to be in good physical and mental shape as he prepares for the 2013-2014 season.
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