Washington Wizards guard Javaris Crittenton pleaded guilty to misdemeanor possession of an unregistered firearm Monday, saying he had a pistol because he feared Gilbert Arenas would shoot him or blow up his car after they argued over a card game.
Wizards guard Arenas pleaded guilty Jan. 15 to a felony gun charge.
Crittenton, 22, was sentenced to a year of unsupervised probation and ordered to mentor young people in Washington and to help with relief efforts for Haiti. He also was fined $1,000 and ordered to pay $250 into a victims fund.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Chris Kavanaugh said the two players first clashed Dec. 19 over a card game on a team flight. Arenas threatened to shoot Crittenton in the face, and Crittenton replied he would shoot Arenas in his surgically repaired knee, Kavanaugh said.
Later, Arenas said he would blow up or burn Crittenton's car, Kavanaugh said.
Two days later, Crittenton brought his legally owned, unloaded handgun to practice, Kavanaugh said. Crittenton put the backpack in his locker and went to see team trainers. When he returned he saw several guns – Crittenton's lawyer said there were three, not four, as previously reported – on a chair in front of his locker with a sign saying, "Pick 1."
Fearing for his safety, Crittenton took the handgun out of his backpack and showed it to Arenas, Kavanaugh said.
Prosecutors said Arenas told Crittenton: "You are going to need more than
that little gun."
Arenas has said repeatedly that the situation was a misguided attempt at a joke and that he never intended to hurt anybody.
Crittenton faces a suspension or fine from the NBA because possession of a gun at an NBA arena is a violation of the league's collective bargaining agreement. Arenas, who has been suspended indefinitely by the NBA, is scheduled to be sentenced March 26.