Sheriff Alex Villanueva of the Los Angeles County dared NBA star LeBron James to double the reward money for information on the gunman who ambushed and shot two deputies.
Villanueva said that the reward money has reached $175,000 with two private individuals donating $75,000, while the rest came from donations from the county.
“This challenge is to Lebron James. I want you to match that and double that reward,” Villanueva said. “I know you care about law enforcement. You expressed a very interesting statement about your perspective on race relations and on officer-involved shootings and the impact that it has on the African-American community.
“And I appreciated that,” he continued. “But likewise, we need to appreciate that respect for life goes across all professions.”
James is very vocal about social issues and has condemned police conduct in interviews and on Twitter. About the Jacob Blake shooting, he said, “I know people get tired of hearing me say it, but we are scared as Black people in America. Black men, Black women, Black kids, we are terrified.”
He also tweeted “And y’all wonder why we say what we say about the Police!! Someone please tell me WTF is this???!!! Exactly another black man being targeted. This s— [sic] is so wrong and so sad!! Feel so sorry for him, his family and OUR PEOPLE!! We want JUSTICE.”
The basketball star has not yet responded to the challenge, and Villanueva says “Let’s see what he does. I’ll be very curious to see what his response is, if any.”