Stern Could Testify In Trial

NBA Commissioner David Stern could be called to testify about what, if anything, the league knew about sexual assault accusations against Charlotte Hornets owner George Shinn.

Circuit Judge Costa Pleicones said Friday he had approved a request by attorneys for Leslie Price, who want to know whether the NBA has investigated Shinn. Price's attorneys plan to interview Stern and ask for the results of any investigation.

Price claims Shinn forced her to perform oral sex at his home in Tega Cay, S.C., in 1997. Shinn says the encounter was consensual and has sued Price for slander and extortion.

NBA spokesman Seth Sylvan wouldn't say whether the league had received a subpoena for Stern, whether the league would try to block such a subpoena or whether the league has investigated Shinn.

Stern has refused to comment.

Pleicones also said Friday that he would allow Price's attorneys to question Shinn about his two-year relationship that ended in 1996 with a former Hornets cheerleader.

Shinn has refused to answer questions about the relationship, saying it was consensual and, therefore, irrelevant. But Pleicones says he will allow the cheerleader to testify at trial because she claims to have had an encounter similar to that Price alleges.

The assault case is scheduled for trial Dec. 6 in Columbia, S.C.

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