It’s fair to assume that when you are staying in a hotel, the security guards are there to protect you, not attack you. But a former NBA star says that’s exactly what happened to him last year in Las Vegas.

Charles Oakley, now an assistant coach for the Charlotte Bobcats, is suing the Aria hotel-casino at MGM Resorts International CityCenter complex, as well as five security guards, in Clark County District Court to recover for his personal injury. The lawsuit reportedly alleges negligence, assault, battery and false imprisonment, among other claims.

Oakley says he was involved in a verbal dispute with security officers when he was an invited guest at Aria’s VIP pool area in late May 2010. He said they prevented him from re-entering the pool area after he left. They allegedly took him to another area of the Las Vegas resort and assaulted him.

The former basketball player says security guards punched him, wrestled him to the ground and handcuffed him, resulting in injuries to his head, neck, back and wrist. He claims his injuries required a visit to the hospital. He calls the incident a “gang-style beat down.”

Oakley, formerly a power forward for teams including Chicago, has worked closely with Michael Jordan. He is apparently a frequent guest at Aria for Jordan’s celebrity invitational golf fundraiser.

At 245 pounds and standing at 6-foot-9, Oakley likely wasn’t expecting to be tackled by the resort’s security guards. He’s asking for general, special and punitive damages. MGM declined to comment on the incident.

Source: Washington Post, “Former NBA star Charles Oakley sues Las Vegas resort over ‘gang-style beat down,'” 14 May 2011