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5 Famous Football Players Who Served Jail Time
- Updated: October 13, 2012
These days it is no longer unusual for a famous person such as an artist, actress or even an athlete to serve time in jail. However, even athletes in the past were headlines of such controversy. Like any celebrity, athletes also live a life where pressure from an array of people can trigger the most unusual acts and behavior. They usually end up with bad company, abusing alcohol and drugs and crave for power resulting in gun possession and inflicting bodily harm.
Here are a few athletes who have made headlines for being awarded with jail sentences.
The former American football L.A. Rams cornerback was first convicted of drug trafficking charges in 1995. But in 1996 he was sentenced to 41 years in prison for conspiracy to murder a prosecution witness and the federal judge from his drug trafficking trial by hiring contract killers.
The former Baltimore Ravens running back was sentenced to four months in federal prison in January 2005 for conspiring to possess and with the intent to distribute five kilograms of cocaine. Jamal was released in August 2005 and returned to the Ravens for the 2005 and 2006 seasons. Before the 2007 season, he was signed up as a free agent with the Cleveland Browns, but was released in February 2010. In October 2011 a suit from Regions Bank against him was filed for an unpaid loan.
The former professional football player of the Green Bay Packers was convicted for two counts of second degree sexual assault of his aunt through marriage in 1987. He served 15 months in jail while gaining the nickname “The Aunteater”. Mark had not been able to resume his career in the NFL after his release.
The former Carolina Panthers wide receiver was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder, using an instrument to kill an unborn child and shooting into an occupied vehicle in 2000. He was sentenced to 18 to 24 years in jail and is expected to be released in October 2018. Rae’s then eight month pregnant girlfriend, Cherica Adams, was shot at in November 1999 by Van Brett Watkins, a friend of Rae. Adams had managed to call 911 and had relayed how Rae stopped his vehicle in front of hers, while Watkins seated on the passenger side of the passing car shot at her, then both cars drove off. Unfortunately, Adams went into a coma shortly after and her baby was delivered via caesarean section. Adams died a month after. The Panthers had released Rae for a morals clause in his contract a few days after Adams’ death and his becoming a fugitive.
In 1983, the boxer was sentenced to 35 years in jail for burglarizing and then sexually assaulting his neighbor, who was a school teacher. At this point, he had 22-0 with 19 knockouts. When he was released with parole in 1999, Tony returned to boxing and won six high profile fights by knockout. However, he served another jail term with probation in 2000 for breaking into a woman’s home. In 2004, he was found speeding without a driver’s license and in possession of heroin and pornography. He is said to be released in February 2013.
Valerie Howards is a freelance writer specializing in criminal cases and bail bonds Costa Mesa. She regularly contributes articles to an array of law firms, bail bonds and animal websites.