Ex-NBA draft pick arrested, jailed for assaulting cop

jamelle-cornleyFormer Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) import Jamelle Cornley, a former NBA draft and the vital cog in the Rain or Shine’s title run in the 2012 PBA Governors’ Cup, was arrested and jailed in Quezon City for assaulting a cop.

PBA is the world’s second oldest professional basketball league.

The former PBA import, who is lodging at a downtown inn, was enraged and damaged the hotel’s properties after three women, suspected to be prostitutes, reportedly stole US$1,400 from his wallet, prompting the management to seek police help.

Police Officer 2 Armando Lazatin, upon informed of the incident, without delay responded to pacify him only to be assaulted by the six-foot-five cager who punched the cop on the face and knocking him on his back.

Lazatin, who is said to be in critical condition, was immediately rushed to the nearly East Avenue Medical Center for treatment.

But Cornley denied hitting the policeman, saying he only shoved him.

“I asked him to relax and not grab me, repeatedly,” he said, “several times he con-tinued and in which he grabbed me the last time. I shoved him and essentially he fell on his back and quote unquote he was injured.”

Authorities are filing a series of charges against the American, including alarm and scandal, malicious mischief, direct assault and resisting arrest.

During his college years, Cornley was one among Penn State’s top 10 all-time scorers and rebounders, and held various honors, among them as two-time Penn State co-MVP (2007 & 2008) and as 2006 Big Ten Freshman-of-the-Year, the first ever for the university.

He was also part of the 2006 All-Freshman Team selection, the 22nd all-time in scoring at Penn State, and 16th Nittany Lion with over 1,000 career points and more than 500 rebounds.

Cornley was drafted in the 2009 in the NBA Development League and played professionally in the Ukraine. He is the third former NBA-associated player in the PBA to hog the headlines in the past three weeks.

Earlier, former New York Knick and Denver Nugget player Renaldo Balkman was banned from the PBA for conduct unbecoming, while Walter Sharpe, formerly with the Seattle SuperSonics, Detroit Pistons, and the Denver Nuggets, was fired for being drunk and sleeping on a parking lot.

Apprised of Cornley’s run-in with the law, PBA Commissioner Chito Salud said that the American, if he wishes to return to the Philippine league, will face resistance.

“I’d perhaps take the occasion to remind our players that playing in the PBA is im-bued with public interest and they are thus subject to close public scrutiny within the context of higher standards and expectations,” he wrote in the PBA Twitter account, adding that if the allegations and charges are proven true, “I see Mr. Cornley as hav-ing zero chance of playing in the PBA again, at least not under my watch.”

/Digital Journal/


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