NFL Arrest Records: The Pro Players Who Went to Jail
Published July 28, 2023
The National Football League (NFL) is undeniably one of the most popular sports leagues globally. However, a darker side lurks behind the glory and fame in an NFL arrest. Some NFL players with criminal records are alleged of child abuse, murder, gun possession, assault and battery, drug possession, and driving while intoxicated. Other athletes are currently serving time in prison for more serious offenses.
WHAT ARE THE FACTS
Professional sports are generally less violent than the rest of the world. The misdeeds of a few have damaged the NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLB, with the impression that they promote cultures of misbehavior and violence. Professional sports-related crimes often make the news. A few athletes can reflect a poor image on a team or league.
NFL players, for instance, are more law-abiding than their non-league counterparts. NFL players in jail or with criminal record rates are statistically lower than average. Moreover, NFL criminals have steadily declined since 2006.
- NHL has the best-behaved players
- Baseball has the second-lowest arrest rate and the least violent crime incidences of any sport. However, MLB arrests are commonly for driving under the influence.
- The NBA is the smallest league among America’s four major sports. On the other hand, Basketball players had the highest arrest rate of the four, with domestic abuse leading the list of charges.
- The FBI reports that the rate of NFL players arrested is 1 in 45. Non-players make up about 1 in 23 arrests on a national level.
- NHL and MLB players have a low rate of domestic abuse arrests.
- The NBA and NFL arrests have the widest range of offenses—domestic abuse, reckless driving or behavior, DUI, assault and battery, and drug-related crimes.
Even though athletes are statistically less violent than the average population, concerned league authorities and players’ unions are examining the crime problem. According to experts’ theories, the violent tendencies of some players are because of the sport; they have been encouraged to be strong and rewarded for aggression for years. The NFL launched an ad campaign condemning domestic abuse following a recent surge in arrests of professional athletes.
NFL Arrest Records
Arrests involving NFL players that went to jail are diverse and can range from minor offenses to more serious crimes. Common arrests include DUIs, drug-related charges, domestic violence incidents, and firearm violations.
- Donte Stallworth — The former NFL wide receiver has been in trouble with the law multiple times throughout his career. One of the most notable incidents was in 2009 when he pleaded guilty to DUI manslaughter after he struck and killed a pedestrian while driving intoxicated. Stallworth served 30 days in jail and was suspended from the NFL for the entire 2009 season.
- Adam “Pacman” Jones — A former NFL cornerback, Jones has been arrested numerous times throughout his career for various offenses, including disorderly conduct, assault, and public intoxication. His most recent arrest was a misdemeanor assault back in February 2021.
- Malik McDowell — McDowell was taken into custody in Lathrup Village, Michigan, on February 18th, 2019, on charges of assault, resisting arrest, and operating a vehicle while intoxicated. On January 17, 2022, the defensive tackle was arrested on counts of public exposure, resisting arrest, and aggravated battery of an officer. His probation ended on November 13, 2022.
- Jamal Williams — Former San Diego Chargers defensive tackle Jamal.Williams arrest was because of DUI in 2009. Williams was taken into custody and released on bail from the county jail.
- Ray Rice — Former Baltimore Ravens running back, was arrested in 2014 for third-degree aggravated assault after a video surfaced showing him assaulting his then-fiancée in an elevator. Rice pleaded not guilty to aggravated assault but later accepted a plea deal and was placed on probation.
- Plaxico Burress — Former NFL wide receiver Burress’s most notable marks on his record come from a 2008 incident in which he accidentally shot himself in the leg at a nightclub. Burress pleaded guilty and served 20 months in prison.
- Chris Lammons — On February 5, 2022, Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Chris Lammons was charged with battery in an alleged assault of victim Darnell Greene involving New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara. Two criminal charges were brought against Kamara, Lammons, and two other men. The incident made the football player arrested, and the outcome to date is “resolution undetermined.”
- Damon Arnette — The former Las Vegas Raiders player has been indicted on assault and gun charges following a January 2022 incident. The charges against Arnette include assault with a deadly weapon and two drug-related charges. Its outcome is currently “resolution undetermined.”
- Damien Wilson — The linebacker for the Carolina Panthers has had a recent run-in with the law. Wilson was arrested on April 16, 2022, due to being accused of assaulting his girlfriend to the point where she broke her nails and suffered an injury in Frisco, Texas.
- Deshazor Everett — In December 2021, Everett’s Nissan GT-R hit multiple trees and rolled over. Olivia S. Peters, the passenger, passed away at a hospital. Deshazor Everett pleaded guilty and got three months of house arrest in September 2022.
WHAT CAUSES ATHLETES VIOLENT BEHAVIORS
The majority of violent behaviors are connected with alcohol or drug abuse. Each of the four leagues has strict substance abuse regulations, including testing for performance-enhancing drugs and steroids. Baseball and football have recently strengthened their rules and associated consequences. Players will be tested more frequently, and penalties will be increased. Suspension or expulsion from the league may happen more quickly if a player is part of an NFL arrest.
While some NFL players have faced legal issues or been involved in criminal activities, it’s important to remember that such behavior does not represent the entire league or its players. Just like in any other profession or group, there will always be a few individuals who make poor choices and find themselves in legal trouble.
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About The Author
Krizzia Paolyn is an SEO Specialist with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. It has always been her passion to share her voice, and at the same time, to encourage other people to speak up.