Thabo Sefolosha has a lot to say about the death of George Floyd. The Houston Rockets player recently talked to The Associated Press about Floyd, saying he was "horrified" by the entire situation. This comes five years after he dealt with his own experience with police brutality five years ago.
"I was just horrified by what I saw," Sefolosha said via ESPN. "That could have been me." Sefolosha's experience came in April 2015 when he was attacked by a group of New York police officers while being arrested outside a nightclub. His leg was broken during the attack, which has led to him having little trust in law enforcement. Sefolosha said people have talked about "a few bad apples" when it comes to police officers. "But you know, in my experience and from what we're seeing, I think it's deeper than that as a culture that's deeply rooted in it, to be honest," he added. "That's just my honest opinion. I think it's really ... part of a culture where it's deeper than just a few bad apples."
Due to Floyd's death, there have been protests and riots across the country. Sefolosha, who is currently in Atlanta waiting for the NBA season to resume, considered joining in the protest but decided against it. He said: "I'm mad for sure. I mean, it's 2020. Nobody should have to go through this in this time, especially after black people have given up so much for America."
The reason Sefolosha was arrested by police in 2015 stems from an incident where Chris Copeland, a former NBA player, was stabbed along with three people outside a nightclub. Sefolosha was there and complied with officers when they told everyone to leave the area. However, Sefolosha began getting harassed by officers and was arrested on multiple charges. The jury determined the charges were "unfounded," and Sefolosha sued for $50 million, winding up getting $4 million in a settlement.
Sefolosha used the money to help a public defenders organization working in marginalized communities. He said the incident "changed him a lot" in terms of how he views offices in the country. "I went to court and I had to do all of this to prove my innocence," he added. "It really got me deep into the system, and I'm really skeptical of the whole system."