Sacramento Kings

Kings’ Randolph arrested in L.A. on suspicion of marijuana possession with intent to sell

New Sacramento Kings player Zach Randolph joins new teammates Vince Carter and George Hill during a press conference before the Sacramento Kings game against the Los Angeles Lakers on July 10 in Las Vegas.
New Sacramento Kings player Zach Randolph joins new teammates Vince Carter and George Hill during a press conference before the Sacramento Kings game against the Los Angeles Lakers on July 10 in Las Vegas. hamezcua@sacbee.com

Newly signed Sacramento Kings power forward Zach Randolph was arrested late Wednesday on suspicion of possessing marijuana with intent to sell, a felony, authorities said.

Randolph was arrested at 11 p.m. following an incident at 1590 E. 114th St., according to a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department report. He was booked into Los Angeles County jail at 4:23 a.m. Thursday and his bail was set at $20,000.

He was released from jail just before 8 a.m. Thursday, according to the sheriff’s website.

TMZ.com shot video of Randolph leaving jail. He is smiling and talking on a cellphone but does not answer questions from the reporter. A large man apparently associated with Randolph tells the reporter, “Put that down before I knock it down,” apparently referring to a video camera.

Randolph is scheduled to appear in Los Angeles Municipal Court on Aug. 31.

Randolph was arrested after several police cars were vandalized when a large gathering became unruly at a Los Angeles housing project, authorities said.

“False report. Completely misleading,” Randolph’s agent and attorney Raymond Brothers said in a text message sent to The Sacramento Bee. He did not respond to requests to elaborate.

Police on patrol observed a crowd drinking, smoking pot, blasting music and blocking streets at the Nickerson Gardens project in Watts, said Officer Liliana Preciado, a Los Anglees Police Department spokeswoman.

The crowd grew unruly and tried to block the officers’ vehicle after officers took Randolph and another man into custody, said Officer Drake Madison, another department spokesman.

Officers called for backup when the crowd grew and people began throwing bottles and rocks. Five police cars and one sheriff’s vehicle ended up with smashed windows and slashed tires. No officers were hurt.

Also arrested along with Randolph was Stanley Walton, 43, on suspicion of possessing a gun with a previous felony record, Madison said.

Madison would not comment on the amount of marijuana allegedly seized, saying that is part of the ongoing investigation.

In a statement Thursday morning, the Kings said, “We are aware of the situation. We have no further comment at this time.”

The NBA is investigating the matter, league spokesman Tim Frank said.

“We have seen the reports regarding Zach Randolph and are currently working to gather more information,” Frank wrote in an email to The Bee.

Randolph has a history of arrests for drugs and other alleged crimes, according to news accounts. The arrests date to his high school days in Marion, Ind., and include allegations of driving while intoxicated, assault and other crimes while he played for the Portland Trail Blazers and the Memphis Grizzlies.

A 2011 story in The Oregonian details Randolph’s numerous brushes with the law and describes a group of friends called “Hoops Family” that included a man charged with killing a Portland nightclub bouncer. The story said that Randolph was permitted to carry two semiautomatic handguns.

Indiana officials accused Randolph of being a major drug financier in 2011, when he was playing for the Grizzlies. A representative for Randolph denied the allegation.

Last month, Randolph agreed to a two-year deal with the Kings worth $24 million.

Randolph, 36, averaged 14.1 points and 8.2 rebounds last season for the Memphis Grizzlies. He was the 19th overall pick in the 2001 NBA draft by Portland, where he spent his first six seasons. He’s also played for the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Clippers. He played for the Grizzlies the last eight seasons and was an All-Star in 2010 and 2013.

NBA veterans Vince Carter, Zach Randolph and George Hill say they're honored to be Kings at their introductory press conference Monday in Las Vegas.

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