Torii Hunter: Police drew guns on me outside my home

David Brown
Big League Stew

Not recognizing him at first, two police officers drew their guns on Torii Hunter after responding to a burglar alarm at his Orange County home on Wednesday.

The Los Angeles Angels outfielder eventually proved his identity to the cops, who left after determining everything was safe and secure. Hunter then took to Twitter, managing to tell the frightening story with a sense of humor and appreciation, and without malice.

Well, much malice, anyway.

Hunter did describe himself to the Los Angeles Times as a "prisoner in my own home," and his feelings seemed to be hurt that police didn't know who he was at first and didn't take his word after he identified himself as the property's owner (and, presumably, as someone who plays Major League Baseball). When it was over, Hunter said the police wished him and the Angels good luck.

When I showed him my ID, he said I'm an angel fan hope u guys have a great season. ARE U KIDDING ME!!!!!! Lol

It's all fun and games until somebody gets shot.

A few of the details change — depending on which account you read in other media — but the story seems to be that Hunter was home alone after not playing in his team's final exhibition game at Dodger Stadium. He noticed someone at a door — it could have been front or back — and opened it to find the police. Their guns were drawn, Hunter said, but weren't pointed at him and never were, as far as he knew.

"They said, 'Put your hands up!' " said Hunter. "I'm like, 'Man, this is my home!' They asked me questions about who I was. They asked me to go upstairs and get my I.D. The guns were out. I was a prisoner in my own home."

Hunter also told The Times that he thought the police might be home invaders at first. He considered getting a knife from the kitchen before going to the door and "Bruce Lee-ing on whoever was there." (Did Bruce Lee do a lot of work with knives? Anyway.) Hunter made another frightening admission to ESPN Los Angeles:

"I had a pistol upstairs. I'm a licensed gun owner. I'm glad I didn't get it because I could have been shot. What would have happened if I went out there?"

Scary even to think about — the Angels losing an outfielder and The Stew losing an Answer Man. But Hunter was careful to take the blame for the incident, saying it was his fault for triggering the silent alarm in the first place. Teammate C.J. Wilson, also via Twitter, brought up the elephant in the room: Hunter is black, which might have contributed to the police hesitating to believe him. Hunter laughed it off, but if you read between the lines, he didn't write it off:

It is disappointing that police didn't recognize Hunter, a four-time All-Star and nine-time Gold Glove winner. He hasn't played with the Angels for decades or anything, but c'mon — it's Torii Hunter. But, given what they knew, they seemed to handle the incident the right way. So did Hunter, who kept his cool. In a way, thank God he grew up in a rough part of Arkansas.

The regular season is here!
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