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Newshawk: Richard Evans
Pubdate: Tue, 18 Jul 2000
Source: New York Times (NY)
Copyright: 2000 The New York Times Company
Contact: letters@nytimes.com
Address: 229 West 43rd Street, New York, NY 10036
Fax: (212) 556-3622


LOS ANGELES - Basketball great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was arrested Tuesday night for
investigation of driving under the influence of marijuana.

The former Los Angeles Lakers and UCLA star was taken into custody about 7 p.m. after a
police officer who pulled him over for speeding smelled marijuana fumes coming from the
open window of his car, said Officer Eduardo Funes, a police spokesman.

Abdul-Jabbar failed a field sobriety test administered near the San Fernando Valley
intersection where he was stopped, Funes said. He was taken to a local jail, where he was
booked on the misdemeanor charge and released on his own recognizance.

``Mr. Abdul-Jabbar was very respectful of the officers who arrested him, and very
cooperative,'' Funes said.

Abdul-Jabbar, 53, is the NBA's career scoring leader with 38,387 points in the regular season
and 44,149 total, including the playoffs. The 7-foot-2 center, known for his
all-but-unstoppable hook shot, led the UCLA Bruins to three consecutive NCAA
championships before joining the NBA. In a career spanning 20 seasons, Abdul-Jabbar
played in 19 All-Star games and won six MVP awards.

He played on six NBA championship teams, including one with the Milwaukee Bucks and the
last five with the Los Angeles Lakers when he teamed with guard Magic Johnson during the
Lakers' Showtime era of the 1980s. He was an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Clippers
this past season. Tuesday marked the second time in two years Abdul-Jabbar has run into
trouble with the law over marijuana. He paid a fine in the spring of 1998 after surrendering a
small amount to officers at an airport in Toronto. The basketball great has said he uses the
drug to alleviate the migraine headaches that have bothered him for years.

``I use it to control the nausea which comes with the headaches,'' he said during a book
signing earlier this year.
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