One of the top candidates considered for the Boston Celtics’ vacant head coach position is under public scrutiny this week, due to past sexual assault allegations that have resurfaced over social media, and is now starting to pick up steam.
Seven-time All-Star, 2004 NBA Finals MVP, and current Los Angeles Clippers assistant coach, Chauncey Billups is under fire. Stemming from his playing days as a member of the Celtics, Billups and former teammate Ron Mercer settled the lawsuit of a woman who said she was raped by the two Celtics rookies, at the time, in 1997.
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Chauncey Billups’ 1997 Sexual Assault Allegations
The woman claimed the assault took place at the home of former Celtics star Antoine Walker. Sharing excerpts from “Out of Bounds: Inside the NBA’s Culture of Rape, Violence, and Crime,” — which was written by author Jeff Benedict and published in 2001 — Willamette Week’s Eric Griffith revealed the shocking reports of what happened during the wee hours of November 11, 1997.
In the book, the detailed account of the victim was shared by Detective David McGann of the Waltham Police Department and a nurse at the Boston Medical Center.
“A nurse at the Boston Medical Center had telephoned the Waltham PD and reported that a rape victim had come in the previous night, suffering from shock,” Benedict wrote. “A rape-kit examination revealed injuries to her throat, cervix, and rectum, along with bruising on her back consistent with someone being dragged across a rug. Sperm had been retrieved from her vagina.
“The victim had been referred to a nurse-psychologist and was scheduled to be discharged to her home later in the morning.”
For the detective, it was at this point he started to learn who the perpetrators were.
“The victim in this case reported that her assault took place inside a Waltham luxury condominium belonging to Boston Celtics superstar Antoine Walker,” Benedict wrote. “And she had accused Walker’s teammates Ron Mercer and Chauncey Billups along with Walker’s roommate, of raping her.”
After hiring criminal defense attorney Dennis Kelly, Mercer and Billups told their side of the story.
“While we have no confirmation on what they said, their answers to a subsequent civil complaint tell a story that began the same way as their accuser’s did,” Benedict added. “But the ending was quite different. Mercer denied going to Walker’s home after leaving the comedy club. He said that he went to Billups’s home. There, he said, his accuser initiated and performed oral sex on him. Billups also denied going to Walker’s home after leaving the club.
“And he denied having sexual contact in his home with his accuser.”
Will Billups’ Past Affect His Chances for Landing a Head Coaching Job?
Billups claims the sexual contact between him and his accuser was consensual and happened in a vehicle. The lawsuit was eventually settled for an undisclosed amount, according to the Washington Post.
Portland Trail Blazers All-Star Damian Lillard recently called for the franchise to hire Billups in place of former head coach Terry Stotts. Now, Griffith, who shed light on Chauncey’s controversial past, is politely asking the six-time All-Star to reconsider.