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Kobe Bryant denies hurting young man at church in San Diego

August 16, 2011 |  4:42 pm

Kobe Bryant
Kobe Bryant denies that he hurt a young man out of anger because he thought the man was taking his picture in a San Diego church, an attorney for Bryant announced Tuesday.

"Mr. Bryant is aware of the baseless allegations asserted against him," said a statement issued by attorney Mark Campbell, "and is prepared to defend against them fully."

Campbell identifies Bryant's alleged accuser as Thomas Hagos, 20, of San Diego. Reporters who went to his home were told to leave by a woman who refused to open the door.

Hagos filed a police report saying that Bryant grabbed his cellphone while they were attending services at St. Therese of Carmel Church in the San Diego neighborhood of Carmel Valley. Bryant was angry because he thought that Hagos was taking his picture, according to the police report.

Finding no pictures on the phone, Bryant returned it. Hagos later went to a hospital with a slight wrist sprain.

San Diego police would like to interview Hagos but, through a representative, he has indicated that he will not be available for interview until Aug. 24. No reason for the delay was given.

Until the alleged victim is interviewed, police do not plan to interview the basketball star, a police spokesman said.


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-- Tony Perry in San Diego