Britney Spears Seeks Apology After Encounter With Victor Wembanyama’s Security

The singer Britney Spears asked for an apology on Thursday after accusing a member of a star N.B.A. player’s security detail of striking her in the face outside a Las Vegas restaurant when she tried to greet the player, Victor Wembanyama of the San Antonio Spurs.

In a tweet about the encounter, Spears did not name Wembanyama, but in discussing the unnamed player she referred to public comments he had made to reporters hours before. Spears, 41, said that she had seen “an athlete” at two different hotels Wednesday night and “decided to approach him and congratulate him on his success” at the second one, outside a restaurant. Spears said after she tapped him on the shoulder, a member of his security team “back handed me in the face,” knocking her glasses off.

Spears said that she wanted an apology from the player, his security and his team. Wembanyama, 19, was the No. 1 pick in the N.B.A. draft last month. He is expected to play in the N.B.A.’s summer league starting Friday in Las Vegas.

The Spurs did not respond to multiple requests for comment on Thursday. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said in a statement on Friday that it had finished its investigation of the encounter and that no charges would be filed against “the person involved.”

According to the incident report, which was shared with The New York Times on Friday, officers responded to a call from someone who said that Spears had been “hit in the face by a security guard that was guarding an San Antonio Spurs basketball player.”

The report cites three members of Spears’s security team, including Cade Hudson, Spears’s manager, who said that Spears saw a tall man who “she thought might be a basketball player for the Spurs” and went to tap his shoulder, after which a member of Spurs security “immediately back handed Britney in the face.”

TMZ, which first reported the incident on Thursday morning, published video of the brief encounter on Friday, which appeared to show the guard swipe his left arm back toward Spears as she called toward Wembanyama and reached her left arm toward him.

The police report said officers believed after reviewing surveillance footage that the guard caused Spears to “hit herself in the face.”

But a member of Spears’s security team, Quaran Smith, said that the security worker had not hit her directly but instead “pushed Britney’s hand off the Spurs player,” according to the police report. Another member of Spears’s security team, Steven Ketter, told the police that it looked like the person guarding Wembanyama “had pushed her off of him” without looking.

Smith and Ketter both said that the Spurs security worker and Spears apologized to each other for the incident at the restaurant, according to the police report, and Smith said he believed the incident was over.

Both Smith and Ketter characterized the response by the Spurs security member to police as a standard reaction by personal security. But Spears said in her tweet that the reaction was overboard. “I get swarmed by people all the time. In fact, that night, I was swarmed by a group of at least 20 fans. My security team didn’t hit any of them,” she said.

A lawyer for Spears, Mathew S. Rosengart, declined to comment beyond Spears’s statement.

Before Spears’s tweet on Thursday, Wembanyama offered his version of events while meeting with reporters. He said that “there was one person calling me,” but Spurs security had told him not to stop for anyone, since doing so could have invited a crowd. He then said that a person had “grabbed me from behind, not on my shoulder.”

“I don’t know with how much force, but security pushed her away,” Wembanyama said, adding that he did not know that the woman was Spears until hours later. “I didn’t stop to look, so I kept walking and enjoyed a nice dinner.”

Spears said she was “not prepared for what happened” and that it was “super embarrassing” to discuss publicly.

“However, I think it’s important to share this story and to urge people in the public eye to set an example and treat all people with respect,” she said.

Wembanyama, at over 7 feet tall, is one of the most heralded N.B.A. prospects in recent decades. He averaged more than 20 points and 10 rebounds per game last season with Metropolitans 92, a French professional team.

Claire Fahy contributed reporting.

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