The father of the woman who ran onto the Pepsi Center court during Game 4 between the Los Angeles Lakers and Denver Nuggets said his daughter is working through emotional issues and was misidentified by authorities as a one-time stalker of former Nuggets forward Kenyon Martin.
Savannah McMillan-Christmas, 20, was arrested for trespassing after walking on the court during the first half of the Lakers' win in Denver on Sunday night. Her father, Chris Christmas, said McMillan-Christmas is at home under family and professional care. McMillan-Christmas is scheduled to appear in Denver court on June 5.
"I got a call from her mother about 3 a.m. on Monday, but I already knew it was her," Christmas said by phone. "She was taken to the game by her mother and they were sitting fairly close. I was in shock when I saw her on the floor.
"There is a personal issue in her life that she has been dealing with that makes her impulsive. She was really excited about the game. Her emotions overwhelmed her. This is something she will regret. She is traumatized. We would respect if everyone would be sensitive to this.”
Several sources, including Denver law-enforcement officials, told Yahoo! Sports McMillan-Christmas was a woman that previously stalked Martin during his time in Denver. McMillan-Christmas was also overheard asking, “Where’s Kenyon?" when she walked by the Nuggets' bench before walking onto the court.
Christmas said he isn't sure why his daughter mentioned Martin's name, but said Denver police told him they mistakenly identified his daughter as Martin's former stalker. Det. John White, a Denver police spokesman, told The Denver Post that police are not aware of any previous incidents involving McMillan-Christmas.
“I don’t know why she was saying Kenyon’s name,” Christmas said. “The police told me that they thought she was someone else that stalked Kenyon Martin, but it wasn’t her.”
Christmas said he was disappointed to see reporters camped outside his Denver home Monday and hopes everyone wishes his daughter well.
"She is a young person going through life’s transitions and challenges that have psychological implications," Christmas said. "She was extremely excited and not in the right frame of mind. She is a very good person with a lot of potential. A lot of families are dealing with issues. You never think your family would have these issues. But this is a wake-up call for me as a father and for my family."
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