Tyreke Evans can’t escape past in new lawsuit
When rookie Tyreke Evans joined the Kings earlier this year, a haunting past followed him to Sacramento, and yesterday it caught up with him again.
According to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Evans is one of four parties named in a wrongful death lawsuit stemming from a 2007 drive-by shooting that took the life of Marcus Reason. The rookie and his cousin Jamar Evans — who was sentenced to 9-20 years plus eight years probation after pleading guilty in January 2009 to third-degree murder and weapons charges — are two of four named in the civil suit seeking a judgment in excess of $50,000.
The Sacramento Bee reported filing attorney Peter Dicce said he has not discussed a specific amount with the family who filed the suit, meaning much more could be asked for in the coming months.
I wrote in July 2009 that Tyreke Evans’ shadowy past could come back to haunt his future, and the news yesterday was proof. While Evans has been nothing but a blessing since his landing in California’s capital city, his affiliations have caught up with him in this lawsuit, which aims not only to tag him with a hefty bill but to tarnish his reputation.
The Bee story reported Evans’ lawyer Hayes Hunt saying, “Tyreke Evans did nothing wrong. He fully cooperated with the Delaware County District Attorney’s office and the (prosecution) … and was called as witness for the district attorney and testified to what he saw and what was happening at the time of the incident. We thought this was in the past, but it’s something we’ll deal with.”
Tyreke Evans was not charged in the shooting, and he fully cooperated with the investigation. Any other day, the story would end there. But when it’s an NBA player involved, everything changes.
While I wrote in my column in July that players like Evans with a bright future should avoid putting themselves in situations like the one on that fateful night in 2007, I write today that he’s done everything in his power to move on from it. He’s across the country from the crime’s origin, making strides in a career that looks as fruitful as any rookie I’ve ever seen. If there ever was a way to leave a life like that in the past, Evans has done it. He’s escaped and moved on, at least until now.
His fame and celebrity has made him a hero in Sacramento, but it will make him a victim in this lawsuit. He’s the target because of his success, and if his team loses the case, he’ll have to fork over some of his earnings to pay for a crime he did not commit.
Welcome to the NBA.