Lakers Security Guard Charged with Stealing 2009 and 2010 Championship Rings

Joe FlynnContributor IDecember 12, 2013

MISSISSAUGA, ON - NOVEMBER 09:  Championship rings from many sports are on display for sale at the Sportcard & Memorabilia Expo on November 9, 2013 in Mississauga, Canada.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Usually, a professional sports team hires security guards to prevent items from being stolen. But with all the bling in a standard NBA locker rocker, sometime even the guards can't keep their hands to themselves.

Such was the case for the Los Angeles Lakers, who had championship rings from 2009 and 2010 stolen by a former security guard at their training center.

The suspect has been identified, according to CNN:

Eddie Monterroso, 23, who worked at a Lakers training facility, was arrested Tuesday outside the facility, the El Segundo Police Department said. [...]

A search of the suspect's home on December 10 "yielded evidence of the theft as well as the championship rings," according to an El Segundo Police Department statement.

He also took $20,000 in gift cards. Now that's just mean.

Police Lt. Jaime Bermudez told Larry Altman of the Daily Breeze, "It wasn’t easily apparent who it was. We caught a couple lucky breaks."

Of course, this was only the second-luckiest break involving 2010 Lakers championship rings; it still ranks behind Boston Celtics big Kendrick Perkins blowing out his knee in Game 6 of the 2010 Finals.

The rings were spares, and didn't belong to any particular Lakers employee, so there will be no tearful reunion between man and jewelry.

Believe it or not, this is the second case of Lakers championship ring theft to happen in the last year. In March, former Laker A.C. Green had rings stolen from his 1987, 1988 and 2000 championship seasons with the Lakers, according to Altman.

No matter what the courts decide, two things seem clear: The Lakers have won a lot of championships and they need better security.