Pickleball is an up and coming sport that is a little bit tennis, a little bit Ping Pong, and a little bit Badminton. And a whole lot of Crime!
Pickleball was invented in the 1960s, when some guys wanted to play badminton, and couldn’t find the shuttlecock. They used a Wiffleball, lowered the net, and exchanged the Badminton Racquets for paddles. In 1972 it became an official sport.
Fast forward 50 years. There are Pickleball courts at many Tennis facilities, and Rec Centers, and according to their website, the Central Park Recreation Center is one of them. Arslan Guney is 71 years old, and frequents the Central Park Recreation Center where he reserved a Basketball court for he and his friends to play PickleBall. When he showed up, the lines for the game were faded, so he pulled out a Sharpie, and re-drew the Pickleball court lines. They played their games, and went on their way.
3 days later, Arslan gets an email telling him his Rec Center Membership has been terminated, and a warrant for his arrest has been issued. He is being charged with Felony Criminal Mischief. They say there was over $10,000 in Damages to the floor with his Sharpie Graffiti. The City of Denver says they have a responsibility to protect the property and assets of the city, and defacing the property in any manner is unacceptable. Felony Criminal Mischief with damages between $5,000 and $20,000 is a Class 5 felony, which can have a fine between $1,000, and $100,000, and/or prison time of 1-3 Years. That’s on the same level as Inciting a Riot and Aggravated Vehicle Theft.
Arslan has hired an attorney, a fellow Pickleball Player.
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