Rodman, cameraman agree to settlement

By Paula Parrish
Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune

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MINNEAPOLIS -- After reaching a reported $200,000 out-of-court settlement Tuesday, Dennis Rodman apologized by phone to the cameraman he kicked, Eugene Amos, who will not pursue assault charges.

From his home in California, the suspended Chicago Bulls forward spoke to Amos, and the two issued a joint statement through their attorneys announcing the confidential agreement.

"He called because he wanted an opportunity to explain the incident and how sorry he felt about it to Mr. Amos," said Andrew Luger, Rodman's Minneapolis attorney, who connected the two at his office after meeting with Amos and his attorney, Gale Pearson.

"Mr. Rodman had earlier expressed a desire to express his regrets to Mr. Amos, something he wanted to do, but had to wait for the attorneys to work out all the details," Luger said.

Pearson and Luger told the Minneapolis Police Department last weekend that Amos would not pursue charges against Rodman for kicking him Jan. 15 during a Timberwolves-Bulls game at Target Center.

According to the statement, "the matter has been resolved to our mutual satisfaction. We are pleased that we have been able to resolve this matter without resorting to litigation. ... Both of us desire to move forward with our lives and to put this incident behind us without animosity or ill will."

Citing its confidentiality, Luger refused to disclose the agreement's terms.

"I'm not commenting on the number," Luger said when asked about media reports of a $200,000 figure. "I have no comment on a monetary settlement."

Pearson did not return phone calls seeking comment.

A man who answered the phone at Amos' residence and did not identify himself, said, "He won't be back for two or three weeks. I'm not at liberty to say (where he went)."

A week ago, Rodman stumbled out of bounds and into a row of photographers that included Amos, who works for IVL Post -- a video company that handles graphics, production and camera work for Target Center events.

Before Rodman got back to his feat, he kicked Amos, in the groin, according to Amos. During a seven-minute game delay, Amos was placed on a stretcher and taken to Hennepin County Medical Center, where he was treated and released.

Last Friday, two days after the incident, NBA commissioner David Stern fined Rodman $25,000, suspended him for at least 11 games and ordered him to undergo counseling as a condition for reinstatement.

Combined with the settlement figure and salary lost during the suspension, the incident will cost Rodman about $1.4 million.

Minneapolis police Sgt. Pete Jackson, the officer investigating Amos' assault report, was told by attorneys last Saturday that both sides were close to a civil settlement, and Amos wouldn't be pressing charges.

Police investigate criminal complaints independently of any civil action. But Minnesota law allows a crime victim to refuse to prosecute except in cases of domestic assault, murder and instances involving vulnerable victims, such as a child or someone mentally impaired.

(Distributed by Scripps Howard News Service.)

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