Imagine finding out that you sat next to a murderer at a Knicks game.
How about two?
Fans may have been screaming about a double-dribble or hoping to see a double-double, but it is a safe bet that no one at the game was yelling about a double-murder. If you were at a Knicks game in Madison Square Garden during the 1989-1990 NBA season, you might very well have sat next to the Menendez Brothers. One of the most infamous basketball cards of all time may serve as a permanent record of your proximity to the culprits.
Behold. Lyle and Erik Menendez, better known as “The Menendez Brothers,” sitting courtside at Madison Square Garden during the ’89-90 season. This Mark Jackson card shows them at a Knicks game after the murder of their parents and prior to their arrest for the heinous crime.
While watching this game, the Menendez Brothers were the only two who knew the truth about their parents’ murder. Everyone else was none the wiser.
Born into a wealthy Beverly Hills family, 21-year-old Erik and his brother, 18-year-old Lyle Menendez were set to inherit a substantial fortune upon the death of their parents. Armed with shotguns, the sinister brothers decided on August 20, 1989 to cash in. They unload 15 bullets into their parents as they sat and watched TV on the couch.
The duo managed to escape police suspicion as the investigation lingered over many months. During that time, Lyle and Erik acted with impunity. Between August ‘89 and their apprehension in March ‘90, the Menendez brothers went about their business seemingly worry-free.
Sporting inflated bank accounts and a sense of confidence, the brothers embarked on a historic spending spree.
Erik and Lyle thought they got away with murder. They spent much of their parents’ money and insurance proceeds on many lavish things – exotic vacations, Rolex watches, new cars, expensive condos – and courtside tickets to a Knicks game.
After blowing through $700,000 in 6 months, the police became increasingly suspicious of the boys’ motive to kill their parents. Ultimately, on a leaked recording, they admitted to committing the vicious murders. The two brothers are now serving life-terms.
A 2018 reddit post went viral after a true-crime junkie uncovered the Mark Jackson card and the identity of the two despicable Knicks fans. After this news broke, the value of the card spiked significantly, catapulting it from a run-of-the-mill NBA player card, to being a true collector’s item with a cringeworthy cameo.
Today, one can find one of these cards in “raw” form for less than $5. Below is the data on the most recent sale at the highest grade: PSA 10.
Mark Jackson 1990 NBA Hoops #205 – Graded PSA 10
Total graded population = 3,485
PSA 10 population = 106
Most recent public sale = $255.00 on October 9, 2022
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