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MavsFanFinley
06-20-2002, 11:07 PM
Former Jazz center convicted of assault

June 20, 2002

HOLLADAY, Utah (AP) -- Former Utah Jazz center Olden Polynice was convicted of misdemeanor assault in a run-in with another golfer at a local course last year.

A four-member jury returned the verdict Wednesday and sentencing was set for July 15 before Justice Court Judge Daniel Gibbons in this Salt Lake City suburb. The maximum penalty is six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Polynice was accused of hitting 21-year-old Tyler Swensen after he was struck above the right elbow by an errant tee shot by one of Swensen's playing partners at the the Old Mill Golf Course.

``It is not fair, I feel, but I have to move on,'' said Polynice, who contended he never punched Swensen but only pushed him when he thought Swensen was going to hit him.

``I am a little hurt by this. I thought I had the same rights as everyone else in America,'' he said.

In January 2001, Polynice pleaded guilty to two counts of impersonating a police officer and one count of disorderly contact. He was fined $1,000, forced to apologize and ordered to undergo anger management counseling.

Prosecutor Lohra Miller characterized Polynice as ``a celebrity out of control, a bully on the golf course.''

Swensen testified Tuesday that Polynice pushed him, punched him in the kidney and face, and spit in his eye after Swensen tried to apologize for the incident. Swensen and another member of his group had approached Polynice, who was alone in his golf cart, to see if Polynice was all right, Swensen said.

Polynice and Swensen then got into a shouting match over who hit the ball and whether any of Swensen's golf partners tried to warn the athlete that the ball was headed his way.

``Testosterone levels started picking up at this point,'' Polynice said.

Swensen said he never tried to defend himself against the 7-foot, 250-pound Polynice, and said his friends did not come to his aid.

Polynice testified that Swensen looked like he wanted to hit him.

``I admit to mushing him in the face and pushing him off of me, but both times he was coming at me,'' Polynice said. ``I felt threatened, bottom line. There were four guys.''

Polynice opted out of his $2.4 million contract with the Jazz at the end of the 2001 season and said he hopes this conviction will not hamper his attempts to sign with another NBA team.

``There are a lot of guys playing in the NBA who have done a lot worse,'' he said.

Drbio
06-20-2002, 11:13 PM
Put a fork in Olden...he's done. What a stupid mistake.

MavKikiNYC
06-21-2002, 06:35 AM
Olden can also start practicing signing his name on the check that he's about to write for several thou to cover that guy's injuries/pain and suffering.