Suspect arrested in run-in with Pacers at strip club
Indianapolis police this morning arrested a man they say was driving the car that struck Indiana Pacers player Stephen Jackson outside of a Westside strip club.
Deon “Dino” Willford, 23, Indianapolis, was arrested about 1 a.m. today on initial charges of criminal recklessness, leaving the scene of an accident and driving without a license, police said. He was held this morning in the Marion County Jail with bond set at $100,000, records show.
Jackson and three other Pacers were leaving Club Rio, 5054 W. 38th St., when police say Jackson fired five shots from a 9 mm handgun after a man punched him in the face and tried to run him over with a car outside the club at 3 a.m. Friday.
Police have said Jackson appeared to be firing in self-defense. Marion County prosecutors will evaluate the evidence and make the ultimate decision on whether Jackson or his teammates — Jamaal Tinsley, Marquis Daniels and Jimmie “Snap” Hunter — will face charges.
Police interviewed Quentin “Fingers” Willford, 24, Indianapolis, in connection with the incident, but he was not arrested. Police are still investigating a third man linked to the incident, Sgt. Matthew Mount said.
Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi said Monday that fingerprint checks are being conducted on a small bag of marijuana found in Tinsley’s car Friday. Police did not arrest anyone at the scene because they could not link the drug to any particular person.
Friday’s incident began with an exchange of words inside the club and spilled into the parking lot as the Pacers tried to leave.
One man slugged Jackson in the jaw, bloodying his mouth. The other men got into a blue Oldsmobile, and the car struck Jackson.
Jackson suffered bruises and, after the incident, he went to the hospital, where he had stitches to close cuts on his mouth. He was not seriously hurt but rested during the team’s afternoon practice.
Jackson told officers he fired all five shots into the air, an account police are still checking out. Officers seized his handgun and guns found in the cars of Tinsley and Daniels. Police said all have valid permits.
Part of the incident was captured on Club Rio’s security camera, Mount said. The grainy video shows Jackson firing one shot in the air, then getting struck by the car, Mount said. The other events occurred outside the camera’s view.