Former NBA sharpshooter Ray Allen claims he is the victim of an online stalking scheme known as “catfishing.”
Allen filed an emergency motion Tuesday morning claiming Bryant Coleman is the online aggressor despite the fact one day earlier Coleman told an Orange County, Florida court that the retired basketball star was stalking him.
Allen, who asked that Coleman’s initial stalking complaint be thrown out, is also seeking a restraining order against Coleman, who he said has continued to pester him online since Allen discovered the scheme.
Catfishing is the term for creating a false identity online, sometimes including fake circles of friends on bogus social media accounts in order to get closer to someone, perhaps romantically. It is a form of digital stalking meant to deceive someone into thinking you are someone or something you’re not.
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“Coleman pretended to be a number of attractive women interested in Ray Allen,” according to a motion filed on Allen’s behalf, via the Associated Press. “Ray believed he was speaking with these women and communicated with them.”
Allen said Coleman was attempting to blackmail him by releasing details of those communications but the two made a deal to not make those conversations public, which Allen said Coleman has since broken. Allen said Coleman has continued to come at him on social media.
“He posted about Ray’s wife, Ray’s children, Ray’s dog, Ray’s homes, Ray’s wife’s restaurant, and numerous other personal items,” the motion said. “Coleman not only posted about these things, he would actually post while physically located inside Ray’s wife’s restaurant in Orlando. And he would make sure they knew it, tagging Ray and his wife on those posts.”
Allen is a 10-time NBA All-Star, won championships with Boston and Miami, and is the NBA’s all-time leader in three-pointers. He starred in the Spike Lee film “He Got Game,” about a Brooklyn-born high school basketball prodigy.
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“Ray Allen was the victim of an online scheme to extract money and embarrass him by someone who appears to be troubled,” Allen’s lawyer David Oscar Markus told TMZ. “The person who perpetrated this scheme has now started to stalk him and make threats against Ray and his family. Ray has taken legal action to put an end to the threats and to expose his manipulation and wrongdoing.”
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