Shaquille O’Neal is being investigated by Atlanta police in connection with the alleged assault of a co-worker at Turner Studios last year.
The “NBA on TNT” analyst, who won three championships with the Lakers and another with the Miami Heat, has been accused of tackle-punching Robert Williams at the studio on May 9, 2013, according to the police report.
“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,” Williams told police, according to the report.
The 44-year-old Williams received medical care after the incident. WSB-TV 2 in Atlanta asked Sgt. Greg Lyon with the Atlanta Police Department about reports that Williams suffered severe injuries.
“I don’t know the extent of his injury, but I have heard that as well, that his injuries were severe to his back,” Lyon said.
The police were not called that night, and O’Neal has not been charged at this point.
“This was nothing more than horseplay,” O’Neal’s attorney, Dennis Roach, said in a statement. “No one intended for anyone to get injured.”
Williams’ attorney responded in a statement to WSB: “We understand that the physical attack by Shaquille O’Neal upon Mr. Robert Williams is under criminal investigation. Mr. Williams is presently recovering after surgery.
“However, he does state emphatically that the permanent injuries he received were not the result of participation in any form of ‘horseplay.’”