#Torii Hunter got odd request from cop who put gun in his back

Torii Hunter got odd request from cop who put gun in his back

June 4, 2020 | 5:53pm

Right after police realized who Torii Hunter was — and that he had not, in fact, broken into his own house — one cop who had put a gun in his back had the gall to ask him for tickets, according to the retired outfielder.

As part of The Athletic’s conversation about race, baseball and America in the aftermath of George Floyd’s and the ensuing protests around the country, Hunter relayed the story from when he was living in Newport Coast, California and playing for the Angels.

“I got that wake-up call quick,” said Hunter, who played for the Angels from 2008-2012. “I went into my place, the alarm went off for a second and I cut it off. Maybe an hour later, I see cops at my door. I open my door and say, ‘Is everything OK?’ And they said, ‘Freeze!’ With the guns out. You know you’re coming to Torii Hunter’s house. You already know that!

“The young guy had his gun down, but the older guy had his gun, and a vein popped out of his neck. I’m on one leg. He said, ‘Sit the f— down!’ I said, ‘Hey man, this is my house, calm down.’ And the young guy is looking at me like, ‘I think I know this guy.’ The other guy still had the gun. And he says, ‘Is anybody else in the house?’ I said, ‘No one else is in the house. This is my house.’ I didn’t say nothing about baseball. And he walked me into the house with the gun in my back, to go upstairs to get my license. And when I showed him my license, the younger guy said, ‘I knew that was you.’ And the guy said, ‘Who is he?’ And he said, ‘He plays with the Angels.’ Then this guy who had the gun on me says, ‘Oh, I’m an Angels fan. Can you leave me tickets?’”

The 44-year-old Hunter said he went public about the episode at the time in 2012, which resulted in an apology from the Newport Coast police, but those around him told him not to make a big deal of it.

“I didn’t want to make a big scene,” he said. “My agent said don’t make a big scene. My front office with the Angels said don’t make a big scene. But it should have been a big scene! I didn’t have no video. Everything is on video now. If I would have gotten shot, they would have come up with something and said I was agitating, angry. They can say anything, and guess what? I would have been dead. Because you thought I didn’t live there. Your mind went straight to criminal.”

Hunter, who hosts fundraisers with former Twins teammate LaTroy Hawkins for police officers in Texas, where he now resides, said the path to a peaceful solution for the civil unrest across the country requires building relationships and embracing the uncomfortable.

“Love requires relationships,” Hunter said in the conversation with Hawkins, Doug Glanville, Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard and Dontrelle Willis. “If you don’t love us, that means you don’t know us, or we don’t know you. That’s where we need to get to. That’s the point.”


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