Former NBA player Shaquille O’Neal, 42, is under investigation for an alleged assault towards a fellow co-worker at Turner Studios.
Robert Williams, 44, accuses O’Neal for violently tackling him as he was working at the studio on May 19, 2013.
Williams’ claims are: “Shaquille O’Neal ran out of a room and hit me with a tackle punch to the back knocking me down and falling on top of me injuring my neck and back.”
The incident was reported to Turner Security. Williams says he received medical care following the attack.
The Atlanta Police Department was also informed about the confrontation that took place between Williams and O’Neal, but not within the same night.
Williams later recounted the events to the department.
“(The co-worker) alleged Shaquille O’Neal tackled him to the ground causing injury to his back while they were at work at Turner Studios,”Sgt. Greg Lyon said, according to WSB-TV 2. He later stated: “I don’t know the extent of his injury, but I have heard that as well, that his injuries were severe to his back.”
O’Neal’s attorney has associated the incident with “horseplay” and asserts that his client never intended to harm Williams.
Although charges were never filed against the NBA star, investigators say that they will continue to look into the allegations.
Lyon told the station that because the investigation was primarily “handled by the zone,” they plan to take their findings and go from there.
Williams’ attorney sent a statement to WSB-TV 2, stating that his client is in surgery and is very aware of the criminal investigation underway.
“However, he does state emphatically, that the permanent injuries he received were not the result of participation in any form of ‘horseplay.'”
O’Neal, who retired from the NBA in 2011, is currently a lead analyst on Inside the NBA for TNT’s sports coverage in Atlanta.
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