Former NBA player Javaris Crittenton (pictured) turned himself in to police Thursday after being indicted on murder and gang activity charges, according to WSBTV 2.
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The six-foot-five player, who was named “Mr. Georgia Basketball” by his hometown paper, The Atlanta Constitution-Journal, is accused of shooting a 22-year-old mother of four, Julian Jones, in August of 2011.
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According to police, the woman was not Crittenton’s intended target. As he allegedly shot into a crowd of people, they believe that the 25-year-old had actually been gunning for Trontavious Stephens, a member of R.O.C. Crew, a local set of the Bloods gang whom he believed robbed him of $50,000 in jewelry months earlier on April 11. Jones was shot in the leg and passed away during the surgical procedure to remove the bullets.
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Georgia police charged Crittenton with the woman’s murder in 2011 but he fled authorities. He later turned himself in to California police after the FBI issued a wanted poster of him. Crittenton, who has maintains his innocence regarding his role in the woman’s shooting, was extradited back to Atlanta to stand trial and was released on a $230,000 bond.
Last year, the former L.A. Laker was cuffed for speeding in Riverdale, Ga. Police allege that Crittenton not only refused to exit his Porsche but refused to sign the speeding ticket as well.
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Crittenton and his cousin, Douglas Gamble, who was also indicted in the Jones murder case, face a litany of counts including murder, felony murder, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, giving false statements, attempted murder and participation in criminal street gang activity.
Regarding the last count, the indictment also alleges that Crittenton aligned himself with the Mansfield Gangster Crips after he signed his multi-million dollar deal with the Lakers back in 2007. According to Fulton County Assistant District Attorney Gabriel Banks, professional athletes oftentimes join street gangs for protection.
Brian Steel, Crittenton’s attorney maintains that his client, who also played for the Memphis Grizzlies, Washington Wizards and Charlotte Bobcats, is innocent of the charges. Prosecutors plan to negotiate an arrest or the terms of Crittenton’s continued release with his attorney.