(Updated at 6:30 p.m. EST on Thursday, July 29, 2010) After reported as missing for 10 days, the the AP has learned that former NBA player Lorenzen Wright was shot to death. The case, according to police, is being investigated as a homicide.
Authorities told the wire service on Wednesday morning that they could not confirm the identity of a body they found south of Memphis. Concurrently, two law enforcement officials confirmed to the Memphis Commercial Appeal that the body was Wright.
The AP later learned that police delayed confirming Wright’s death to wait on autopsy results. According to authorities, his identity was matched via dental records. Police also revealed that the Shelby County medical examiner’s office found that Wright died of a gunshot wound.
Wright, 34, was last seen on July 18, when he was supposed to fly out of town. His family filed a missing person report four days later. In 778 career games over 13 NBA seasons, the 6-foot-11 forward/center averaged eight points and 6.4 rebounds. He played for five different clubs over that span: the Los Angeles Clippers, Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies, Sacramento Kings and the Cleveland Cavaliers
Wright is survived by two daughters and four sons. His family issued a statement through their cousin, Camella Logan:
“Lorenzen’s family has come together to mourn his loss and honor his legacy. We appreciate your thoughts, prayers and condolences as they are comforting at this very difficult time. Additionally, we ask that you please respect our privacy as we try to cope with his sudden loss.”