Patterico's Pontifications

11/29/2007

Basketball Coach Bob Knight Exonerated in Hunting Incident

Filed under: Sports — DRJ @ 8:15 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

A Lubbock, Texas, man’s claim that Texas Tech basketball Coach Bob Knight intentionally shot at him, hitting him in the back, was declared unfounded by the Lubbock police department:

“Lubbock police say a claim made by a south Lubbock man that Texas Tech coach Bob Knight shot at him during a hunting outing is unfounded.

James Simpson, 51, said he believes Knight or a member of his hunting party shot at him after he told them to stop hunting dove near his property near south University Avenue Oct. 21. Simpson said bird shot struck his residence while he was cleaning his pool, and he was later shot in the back and neck after he confronted Knight.”

The hunting party, which was in an open field next to Simpson’s house, included PGA golfer Larry Ziegler and a Texas Tech booster:

“Simpson lives inside the Lubbock city limits, but adjacent to a field were it’s legal to hunt. Simpson said he told Knight and other hunters to stop shooting so close to his house, and as he walked away, two more shots were fired in his direction, striking him in the back.

“It scared the hell out of me,” said Simpson, who filed a complaint with police two days later but met with investigators for the first time Tuesday. “I couldn’t work for two days. He shot me on purpose.”

Knight told The Associated Press Simpson’s claims were “ridiculous” but declined to comment further because he didn’t want to give the press and other media outlets more to report, his attorney said. But two others who were hunting with Knight that day – Tech athletic booster Bob Curtis and former PGA golfer Larry Ziegler – refuted Simpson’s claims. “If he said someone shot at him, that’s a joke,” Ziegler said. “That didn’t happen.”

Said Curtis: “If anybody shot over there, it was probably me. If anybody had done it.”

A local station reports that Simpson has a home video from that day:

“Just to summarize: no pellets, no injuries, no property damage and no access to the video tape while the case was being investigated. Police closed the case and no charges will be filed.

Meanwhile the video taped argument between Simpson and Knight sheds some light on what might have happened. First it shows that Knight was pretty well restrained. There was some yelling back & forth but Knight never used any foul language… not even a single cuss word.

Here is part of the Simpson tape as played during our simulcast of News Channel 11:

Simpson: “Move down. You’re too close to my house. Pellets fell on my house.”

Knight: “I didn’t shoot once in that direction.”

Simpson: “Pellets fell on my house. You’re the two. I’m filming you.”

Knight: “You do whatever you want.”

Simpson: “I’m filming you, Bob. I told you move down farther where the pellets don’t land at my house.”

Knight: “I didn’t shoot at your house.”

Simpson: “Bob, I’m telling you now the pellets landed in my swimming pool.”

Knight: “I didn’t shoot at it. I can’t help that.”

Simpson: “I’m asking you to move down farther.”

Later in the tape, Knight’s hunting partner Bob Curtis is heard saying he might have been the guy who shot too close to Simpson’s house. But Simpson ignores Curtis and continues to yell at Bob Knight.”

Simpson has a history of run-ins with the police department:

“It’s not like Mr. Simpson is a complete stranger to police. He has a lengthy history with the department. In some cases he claims to be the victim of harassment, retaliation and death threats. But in at least one case, Mr. Simpson went to jail on accusations of aggravated assault. We were not able to locate the police report on that aggravated assault case from the Lubbock police department web site overnight. So, we’ll try again today during daylight hours, hopefully with a little help from the officer assigned to media relations.”

I bet a lot of people would be surprised that there are places where you can hunt inside the city limits. Texas Senate Bill 734 that became effective 9/1/2006 generally allows property owners to permit hunting on annexed private property of a minimum 10 acres (shotguns) or 50 acres (rifles and pistols) within the city limits.

— DRJ

12 Responses to “Basketball Coach Bob Knight Exonerated in Hunting Incident”

  1. Holy mackerel, what a jerk- and I mean Bobby Knight.
    The homeowner actually did ask Knight at least ten times to move away from his house- he just wasn’t polite enough to suit Knight. It’s amazing a grown, sane man would be willing to spend that much time arguing about something so meaningless.
    There’s a point in the tape where you can tell Bobby’s actually pondering whether he should ignore the guy and walk away- but he just couldn’t bring himself to do it. What a jerk.

    jimboster (6e04e1)

  2. Being from Indiana, it appears that Knight was on his best behavior. However, given his history, going hunting with Knight is at least twice as dangerous as going hunting with Cheney.

    The homeowner clearly wanted this confrontation, with Knight, and got it. That Knight responded should surprise nobody. That Knight responded the way he did may show that he is starting to grow up a little.

    JD (00210f)

  3. I watched the video and it looked like a setup:

    … the man had already spoken with Knight previously, apparently cussing a storm at Knight when he did so.

    … then he comes back and just happens to be filming it. Didn’t call the cops … so presumably he didn’t fear Knight … no, he called for his videocam.

    … then he made a pt of repeating his stock phrases several times, often out of context, but he clearly wanted to get them “on air.”

    I’m not from Indiana, so what little I know of Knight comes from the few select incidents aired on the sports news. But in this case he came across ok. A little miffed from the prior cussing encounter, but generally restrained. I think he knew darn well this guy was trolling for a lawsuit.

    ras (fc54bb)

  4. Knight shot Thomas Mikunda in 1999.

    Knight shot Mary Ann Chumley in 2007.

    Q: Why does this guy still have a hunting license? Why is he even allowed to own guns?

    Serenity Now (b08c67)

  5. ras – The restraint shown by Knight was mind boggling, given they way we know him to be.

    If anyone ever wants to see something hysterical, Knight used to do a local golf show when he was still at IU. There is a video of the outakes, which is funny beyond all comprehension. Nobody is spared his wrath, even the cameraman catches 7 kinds of hell from him. Then, when he starts skulling shots, watch out. Priceless.

    JD (00210f)

  6. well, as a big fan of knight, theres no doubt he’s had anger management problems in the past. thats the price of fame, every fruitcake on the planet will try and exploit the caricature

    james conrad (7cd809)

  7. He should just thank god there were no chairs around…

    Well done Bobby. You didn’t even swear.

    Color me amazed. :)

    Scott Jacobs (425810)

  8. That clown yelling at Knight should have just laid back and enjoyed it.

    JD (00210f)

  9. Knight’s had some in-town run-ins in Lubbock already, including one with the Texas Tech professor at a traffic light that made some headlines. That said, there are some areas on the outskirts of Lubbock that are quite rural (and flat) that are used by hunters, since Texas cities like to annex rural properties or areas where housing/buisnesses are expected to locate years ahead of any actual construction.

    John (34537e)

  10. Bullets and/or pellets landing in one’s yard are NOT grounds for complaint? It is irresponsible to not move further afield when that is brought to a hunter’s attention.

    I’d be pissed too!

    Whitehall (bea526)

  11. I deal with this nonsense every year. Canadian geese are the target because they love the pond across the road from my house. There are usually at least 6 hunters that start shooting early…. on my weekends off. I’ve been jolted out of bed several times by these guys. They do not seem to care that my house is about 50 yards from where they are shooting and my horses are probably about 20 yards from them. I called the law who would not send anyone. I just have to take care of myself and if ANY of my animals or children are harmed, I will own that blessed pond!!!

    Christy (dc90ef)

  12. Mr. Simpson is an idiot. Mr. Knight was legally hunting with permission on private property. Mr. Simpson was obviously attempting to exaggerate the situation by videotaping this “incident”.

    Matt Hayes (3d219d)


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