Kings’ Richaun Holmes faces domestic violence charges

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Sacramento Kings center Richaun Holmes (22), center, watches with teammates from the bench as the LA Clippers stay ahead of the Kings during the first half of the NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 22, 2021, at the Golden 1 Sacramento Center.

Sacramento Kings center Richaun Holmes (22), center, watches with teammates from the bench as the LA Clippers stay ahead of the Kings during the first half of the NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 22, 2021, at the Golden 1 Sacramento Center.

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When the Sacramento Kings announced last week that big man Richaun Holmes was leaving the team for the rest of the season for “personal reasons”, there was confusion among fans who were left with unanswered questions. on what could possibly take him away from a team that desperately needs him.

But now we have some answers: The fan-favorite 6ft 10in striker has been embroiled in a bitter custody battle over their 6-year-old son with his ex-wife. Allexis Holmes, divorced from her husband since September 2019, has accused Richaun Holmes of domestic violence and physically abusing their son. Allexis Holmes has accused her former partner of ‘taking out her frustration’ on their son and causing him to bleed from a blow to the head during a visit on February 6, according to court documents.

This nasty personal fight that started in Los Angeles County has now been playing out in private court for two years. Recently, Allexis Holmes filed a restraining order in Sacramento County on behalf of their son.

The Kings player was ordered by a judge to stay away from his son until he and his wife appear before a Sacramento County judge later this month. Ann Moder, attorney for Richaun Holmes, told me her client denies all the allegations and attributes them to an ex-wife trying to undermine her client’s attempts to gain full custody of their son.

Moder describes Holmes as an “exemplary parent” and said the basketball player’s ex-wife was simply seeking attention and reversing the private court custody decision by filing “baseless claims” in Sacramento.

“We expect the other side to continue to fabricate allegations and present misleading information of all types,” Moder said. “But Richaun will continue to focus on making sure he can spend the most time with his son and support him in any way he can.”

In a series of tweets posted after this column was published, Holmes said, “I never respond to allegations, but when it comes to my son, I have to speak up. You must be stupid as hell to believe that from me… my heart BEAT for my son, I live this very life to see him happy and I could never raise my hand to hurt him EVER.

“My son adores me and I adore him…the relationship we share is the greatest bond I’ve ever known…hearing my name tarnished at his expense is where I draw the line!”

The tweets were deleted shortly after posting.

This case will be decided by a judge, and both sides deserve their day in court. But that revelation behind Holmes’ sudden departure from the Kings was swept under the rug when he mysteriously quit the team without explanation.

Domestic violence in the NBA

Given the NBA’s sad history of domestic violence issues, the way Holmes’ departure was handled by the Kings is unacceptable, but not surprising. The Kings’ official announcement on March 18 led some to speculate that Holmes could have walked away from the team for mental health reasons or perhaps a family tragedy, prompting worried and empathetic reactions from fans. and media.

Holmes’ own statement, shared by the Kings when he left, seems misleading in hindsight. Holmes thanked “everyone for their support during this difficult time”.

“I love this team, I love my teammates and I can’t wait to come back next year,” Holmes wrote.

As fans, we responded to Holmes’ statement by wishing him luck. Now my main concern is the welfare of his ex-wife and son.

I’m not convicting Richaun Holmes before his court date. It appears, however, that the Kings have been focused on covering up a serious situation involving allegations of domestic abuse by one of their players. When I contacted the team this week, they declined to comment on the serious charges against their player, or to say anything beyond the cryptic announcement of Holmes’ departure.

If past NBA history is any indication, Holmes may have only received a slap on the wrist, even though this matter had been made public before. Regardless of the outcome of this case, Holmes’ ex-wife is at a huge disadvantage as she challenges her husband in court – waging a legal battle against a wealthy public figure.

I believe that Alexis

Allexis Holmes will surely face public harassment, doubt and hatred. I don’t envy her this fight, and I believe that no one but a mother who is fighting to protect her child would willingly accept this fight.

Public and private backlash toward victims is just one reason more than 42% of domestic violence victims do not report their abuse to the police, believing the negative consequences outweigh the benefits, according to the report. International Association of Chiefs of Police.

A previous restraining order sought by Allexis Holmes against her husband was denied by a Los Angeles County judge in private court. But she is now pressing her case in Sacramento County.

Allexis Holmes recently refiled domestic violence charges in Sacramento Superior Court following an incident in Sacramento in late February, according to court documents. She alleged that her son had returned from his father’s house “with a bloody blow to the head” and that he no longer wanted to stay with his father. The two sides in this nasty dispute are scheduled to appear before a Sacramento County judge on March 30.

Allexis Holmes also said in court papers that their son suffered from ADHD, which led to her being homeschooled. She said her ex-husband refused to accept the diagnosis and alleged that Holmes was “taking out his anger” on his son.

Sobering statistics

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated that in 2020, at least one in seven children in America has experienced child abuse and/or neglect. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, in 2018, 76% of child abusers were a parent of their victim.

According to the FBI, only three in 10 cases of domestic violence are prosecuted. Yet somehow the NBA manages to make these stats look positively successful.

New Orleans Pelicans center Jaxon Hayes was arrested on 12 counts earlier this year, including forcible confinement, domestic violence and resisting arrest – and continues to play for the Louisiana team. In 2010, Lance Stephenson, then 19, was charged with third-degree assault when he was accused of pushing his girlfriend down a flight of stairs. She suffered serious head injuries, but the case was dropped six months later. Stephenson, then a rookie for the Indiana Pacers, continued his career without any discipline from the league.

Dante Cunningham, then of the Minnesota Timberwolves, was arrested in April 2014 and charged with assault for choking his girlfriend and pinning her against a wall. The NBA offered no discipline.

In 2015, former Miami Heat player and 2007 first draft pick Greg Oden pleaded guilty to assault with moderate bodily injury by punching his ex-girlfriend in the face until it was swollen and bloody. . Oden was put on probation and ordered to go to counseling. The NBA hasn’t sanctioned him either.

I could go on and on.

We need to remember these statistics and we need to believe the victims who come forward and report public figures.

The culture of abuse we cultivate in America is shrouded in silence, and anyone willing to face harassment and public denial while fighting in court for their child’s safety should at least start from a place of belief. Only then can we begin to change the culture and hold all abusers accountable, regardless of their job title or celebrity status.

This story was originally published March 23, 2022 00:00.

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Robin Epley is an opinion writer for The Sacramento Bee, with a focus on Sacramento County politics. She was born and raised in Sacramento, was a member of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Chico Enterprise-Record team for Campfire Coverage, and graduated from Chico State.

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