FBI interviews Sypher, others regarding alleged Pitino extortion - WDRB 41 Louisville News

FBI interviews Sypher, others regarding alleged Pitino extortion

Another major turn in the FBI investigation involving U of L Basketball Coach Rick Pitino.

Fox 41 News has learned that in recent weeks the FBI has interviewed Karen Sypher, the woman at the center of the investigation into the alleged extortion scheme.

Sources, who chose not to be identified, tell us the interview between Sypher and the FBI lasted nearly five hours. The FBI also interviewed Tim Sypher and Karen Sypher's son at a Louisville hotel.

Pitino approached the agency in March claiming he had been threatened and the victim of an extortion plot.

Tim Sypher is the equipment manager for the U of L men' s basketball team. He is also the estranged husband of Karen Sypher.

Recent court documents regarding their divorce have been stricken from the record because they could contain information about the alleged extortion plot.

In an exclusive interview with Fox 41 News, Karen Sypher made several claims about herself and Coach Pitino – claims this news organization has chosen not to broadcast because they could not be substantiated at this time.

Sypher did submit to a polygraph exam, but the results were inconclusive.

Karen Sypher's mother, Judy Cunagin, recently told us of the emotional stress her family has experienced.

"Nothing has ever happened like this before, nothing," Cunagin said. "She's never had, I don't think, a [traffic] ticket. She's never been questioned by anybody. She's a good person.

"I just want my daughter and my family to be safe. I want their safety."

Sources close to the matter have said the alleged extortion plot against Pitino involves "millions of dollars" and is of "a personal nature" not related to basketball.

At this time, no charges have been filed.

Thomas Clay, Karen Sypher's attorney, told Fox 41 News Thursday he did not expect anything to be filed this week, saying: "Things are up in the air."

Kenyon Meyer, Tim Sypher's attorney, said his client has "cooperated" with the FBI but would not provide further details.

Pitino's attorney, Steve Pence, could not be reached for comment.

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