Ex-Chicago Bulls player Brunson acquitted of sexual abuse

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VERNON HILLS — Former Chicago Bulls player Rick Brunson has been acquitted of charges he sexually abused a massage therapist at a Vernon Hills fitness center.

Lake County Judge James Booras made the ruling Friday, saying prosecutors couldn’t “meet the burden of proof required” to convict the 42-year-old Vernon Hills resident.

Brunson had been charged with attempted criminal sexual assault, criminal sexual abuse, aggravated battery and domestic battery.

Defense attorney Dennis Berkson says now that Brunson has been acquitted, he hopes to “go out and restore his name.”

Prosecutors say they’re disappointed in the ruling but respect the judge’s decision.

Brunson played for eight NBA teams from 1997 to 2006. He’s been an assistant coach for college and pro teams, including the Bulls and Charlotte Bobcats.

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