The Harrowing Reason Why Dennis Rodman Is Charged With Assault

In the ’80s and ’90s, Dennis Rodman was an NBA superstar. He’s still considered possibly the best rebounding forward to ever play the game. But as amazing as Rodman’s basketball career was, his personal life has drawn more attention.

His life has always been tumultuous, with short-lived relationships with famous women, legendary partying, and surprising statements. But much of his notoriety is due to darker behaviors.

Legal troubles, alcohol abuse, and accusations of violence have dogged him his entire adult life, and it looks like he’s in no danger of growing out of his legendary bad behavior any time soon.

Yet another assault charge has been brought against Rodman, and it’s just the latest in a long history of outbursts.

The most recent charge

Dennis Rodman speaks onstage
Dennis Rodman | Michael S. Schwartz/Getty Images

In May of this year, Rodman was celebrating his 58th birthday in a bar in Florida when the latest event allegedly took place. The victim, who is not identified, said it was completely unprovoked. He claimed that Rodman slapped him twice for no apparent reason.

Rodman’s response when TMZ asked him about it was, “Whatever happened, it happened, but it didn’t happen.”

Regardless of whatever that is supposed to mean, he’s been charged with misdemeanor battery, which carries a potential sentence of a year in jail. He has entered a plea of not guilty.

It’s not the only trouble he’s gotten in recently. In March of 2018, he pleaded guilty to driving under the influence. There was speculation that he might serve jail time because he was still under probation from a 2016 event when he caused a crash by driving the wrong way on a freeway.

However, he was fined and ordered to complete a nine-month alcohol program.

A long history of accusations

When he was playing in the NBA, Rodman had a “bad boy” image that he definitely earned.

It wasn’t just his copious tattoos or wild hair colors either. Rodman had a temper, and he did things like head-butt a ref during a game. Once he kicked a cameraman in the crotch, which netted him a million-dollar fine from the NBA.

He was sued eight times for misconduct at different casinos, including an incident that he settled out of court, in which he was accused of groping a cocktail waitress and stuffing money down her shirt. 

More seriously, he was accused of domestic violence by all three of his ex-wives, including the model, singer, and actor Carmen Electra. By comparison, his short-lived relationship with Madonna, during which he claimed she wanted to pay him to get her pregnant, was fairly wholesome. Considering how often he’s been court-ordered to rehab for alcohol abuse, it seems clear that part of the chaos in his life is due to a persistent alcohol problem.

Although he often insists that’s all behind him and swears he’s not drinking anymore, it’s worth pointing out that the most recent allegations of violence took place in a bar. 

Strange behavior

One of Rodman’s more puzzling choices was when he visited North Korea’s leader, Kim Jung Un in 2013. It was the first of many “basketball diplomacy” visits he made to the communist country. He called the brutal dictator “a friend for life” and once suggested he was justified in imprisoning American missionary Kenneth Bae (he later apologized for his comments about Bae). 

Because of this “experience” in diplomacy, Rodman is confident that he can help smooth out the problems between the NBA and China, stemming from a tweet from Rockets general manager Daryl Morey that supported the protesters in Hong Kong.

He posted a video on Twitter, urging NBA commissioner Adam Silver to take him along to Shanghai for the negotiations. 

Whatever is next for Rodman, one can only hope he’s headed toward finding some peace in his life. Or at least that he’ll figure out how to keep his hands to himself.