On Tuesday, reporter Kelli Tennant held a press conference to address her lawsuit against Sacramento Kings head coach Luke Walton, who she says sexually assaulted her in a hotel room in late 2014.
It began with an invite to Walton’s room at the Casa Del Mar Hotel in Santa Monica which she was told would be about her the publication of Tennant’s book. That’s when she alleges Walton pinned her to the hotel bed and assaulted her as she claims Walton laughed at her as she pleaded with him to stop.
“I parked my car across the street and as I walked into the hotel with him I anticipated us walking into the lobby, where we would hang out and catch up. And he started to walk towards the elevators, and I asked him where we were going. He said up to his room. And I asked him why we were going up to his room, and he said because the players on his team were in the lobby and he could not be around them, he didn’t want to be seen in the lobby with the players. So I was hesitant, and he said “don’t worry about it, it’s me.” And as someone that I trusted for a long time, I realized I shouldn’t overthink it, and followed his lead. I walked up to the hotel with him and continued to tell myself not to overthink it and that I could trust him.
Out of nowhere he got on top of me and pinned me down to the bed, and held my arms down with all of his weight while he kissed my neck and my face and my chest. And as I kept asking him to please stop and to get off, he laughed at me. I continued to ask him to stop over and over again, without any use of my arms, because he continued to hold me down. I could feel him rubbing his erection on me, and he continued to laugh at all of my pleas to get off and to stop. I thought he was going to rape me.”
After she was able to get off the bed to leave the room, Walton then grabbed her from behind and pinned her arms to her body and continued kissing her. Tennant says she “kept begging him to please let go and to please stop,” and Walton “continued to laugh” in her ear.
Despite everything that happened to her, she does not want to put Walton in jail for this alleged crime.
We asked if there was any video or photo evidence to help prove Tennant’s case, and her attorney essentially told us no.
When asked what they want to get out of the case, Tennant’s attorney says they have no particular sum in mind.
Tennant says she did not go to law enforcement because she feared it would jeopardize her career.
Tennant’s attorney says they do not intend to file a police report because they do not want to put Walton in jail.
Kelli says the alleged sexual assault took place in 2014, when she was 25-years-old.
Walton’s lawyer describes Tennant as “an opportunist, not a victim,” and calling her accusations “baseless.” He believes this entire situation is a money grab.