- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 12, 2006

12:37 p.m.

INDIANAPOLIS - Indiana Pacers guard Stephen Jackson was led away in handcuffs today after a judge entered a not guilty plea on his behalf on a felony charge of criminal recklessness for a fight outside a strip club.

Jackson can post bond, which was set at $10,000, after authorities book him into jail on the charges, which also include misdemeanor counts of battery and disorderly conduct, prosecutor Carl Brizzi said after the hearing in Marion Superior Court.

Indiana judges routinely enter not guilty pleas for defendants during initial hearings. When asked about deputies escorting the player in handcuffs, Brizzi said Jackson was “treated like any defendant.”

Authorities say Jackson, already on probation for his role in the brawl with Detroit Pistons fans two years ago, shot a gun in the air at least five times outside Club Rio on Oct. 6. He originally told police he fired in self-defense during the fight in which he was hit by a car.

But Brizzi, who filed charges Wednesday, said Jackson got his gun from his car and fired it before he was hit. Jackson also originally said he was punched in the face but later told police his injuries were from being hit by the car, Brizzi said.

Jackson attorney James Voyles said his client acted in self-defense.

“A group of thugs attacked a group of young men who were there, some of which were the Indiana Pacers,” he said after the hearing. “There was a fight. There were threatening things that went on in that event, and during the course of that, self-defense was used.”

The criminal recklessness charges carries a prison term of six months to three years. Brizzi said Jackson also could face three months in jail in Michigan if authorities there determine he violated probation.

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