An extortion plot against Mark Jackson, a 17-year NBA veteran and current head coach of the Golden State Warriors, unraveled last week after FBI authorities apprehended former exotic dancer Alexis Adams, 28, and convicted felon Marcus Shaw, 40, in connection with the scheme. Shaw, who went by the alias “Mark Smith,” explained to Jackson that he purchased an Atlanta self-storage locker for $3,500 at auction, and found it contained lewd pictures and incriminating tape recordings proving Jackson had an extramarital affair with Adams in 2006. Shaw subsequently threatened to go public with the lascivious materials if Jackson didn’t pay up.
This is not the first time that the Warriors coach has been in hot water since he was hired by Golden State last June. Jackson, who also works as a full-time pastor at True Love Worship Center in Van Nuys, brought close friend and True Love usher Warren Braithwrite as a guest to his first news conference as the Warriors’ coach. Jackson was forced to explain his relationship with this man three months later, when Braithwraite was arrested for attempting to distribute 10,000 pounds of marijuana. Incidentally, Braithwaite is close friends with actor Jamie Foxx as well.
Despite learning about his affair with Adams, Desiree Coleman, Jackson’s wife of 22 years and a co-pastor at True Love, has stayed with him. The couple have four children together, and this extortion plot has likely been an exasperating experience for their family.
When Shaw initially approached Jackson at a hotel in Memphis on April 3rd, he presented the NBA coach with a folder containing incriminating pictures and audio recordings from the storage unit. In an attempt to handle the situation himself, Jackson offered Shaw $5,000 and tickets to the Grizzles/Warriors game in exchange for the folder. Although Jackson immediately destroyed the evidence, by no means was he in the clear. Apparently, these situations are rarely resolved so easily.
On April 20, Jackson’s wife Desiree received an email on her personal account from TenCommandment7@gmail.com, requesting more money and threatening to distribute her husband’s compromising photographs to the media. According to the FBI affidavit, Shaw wrote, “Do you want to purchase these pictures before I sell them? …I’m in the reputation management business and these pictures were shocking. I am not deliberately trying to hurt you, however this is business, nothing personal.” After this email, Jackson got the Warriors organization and the FBI involved.
On May 2, Jackson offered to pay Shaw seven times what he had given him in Memphis— $35,000. Shaw was offended by this low offer, and claimed he had another offer on the photos for $185,000 already. In an effort to put the extortion plot to rest, Jackson offered Shaw $200,000, but at this point the results from a federal grand jury subpoena came back, as Google had provided authorities with the IP address for TenCommandment7@gmail.com.
Allegedly, phone records provide a clear link between Adams and Shaw, and they are both being charged with conspiracy to commit extortion. Adams, no longer an exotic dancer, is out on a $25,000 bond, but Shaw, considered a flight risk, remains behind bars. In 1996, Shaw did 12 years for aggravated robbery. He was also arrested in 2005 for murder, kidnapping, armed robbery, and assault, but the case was eventually dropped.
The prosecution already has proof the two suspects were in dialogue, and they will likely prove that Shaw received the photos and audio recordings from Adams, and not from a self-storage auction.
For the moment, Jackson has the full support of the Warriors organization. But he clearly has a couple strikes against him, too.
Photo courtesy of the Associated Press