Raptors President: Police Assaulted me “Because I am Black”

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[Toronto Raptors\Masai Ujiri\Police Brutality]
Ujiri: "What saddens me most about this ordeal is that the only reason why I am getting the justice I deserve in this moment is because of my success. Because I’m the President of a NBA team."
Photo: YouTube

Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri issued the following statement about the recently released police body-cam video showing him being assaulted by Alameda County Sheriff’s deputy Alan Strickland--after the Raptors had just won the 2019 NBA Championship.

The newly released video clearly shows deputy Strickland shoving Ujiri who was trying to get on the court to celebrate with his team.

The Alameda County Sherrif's office had blamed Ujiri for the incident. They also claimed the body-cam video had "switch off" during the altercation.

"Thank you to everybody who has expressed disappointment and concern regarding the video that was recently released. My family and I are deeply grateful for your care and consideration.

"The video sadly demonstrates how horribly I was treated by a law enforcement officer last year in the midst of my team, the Toronto Raptors, winning its first world championship. It was an exhilarating moment of achievement for our organization, for our players, for our city, for our country, and for me personally, given my long-tenured professional journey in the NBA. Yet, unfortunately, I was reminded in that moment that despite all of my hard work and success, there are some people, including those who are supposed to protect us, who will always and only see me as something that is unworthy of respectful engagement. And, there’s only one indisputable reason why that is the case - because I am Black.

"What saddens me most about this ordeal is that the only reason why I am getting the justice I deserve in this moment is because of my success. Because I’m the President of a NBA team, I had access to resources that ensured I could demand and fight for my justice. So many of my brothers and sisters haven’t had, don’t have, and won’t have the same access to resources that assured my justice.

"And that’s why Black Lives Matter.

"And that’s why it’s important for all of us to keep demanding justice. Justice for George. Justice for Breonna. Justice for Elijah. Justice for far too many Black lives that mattered. And justice for Black people around the world, who need our voice and our compassion to save their lives.

"Those are the ties that bind us."

With love and determination,

Masai Ujiri

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