Clarett Arrested With 4 Loaded Guns

By JoAnne Viviano
Associated Press
Thursday, August 10, 2006

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Aug. 9 -- The legal morass that has ensnared Maurice Clarett since he was Ohio State's star running back expanded Wednesday when police found four loaded guns in his sport-utility vehicle and couldn't subdue him with a stun gun because he was wearing a bulletproof vest.

It was just the latest in a series of problems for Clarett, who hasn't played since he scored the winning touchdown in the Fiesta Bowl as a freshman for Ohio State's 2002 national champion team.

He already faced trial in an armed robbery case next week, and his bond on those charges was raised to $1.1 million after he was jailed on the new weapon and traffic charges.

Clarett hid one semiautomatic handgun under his legs in the driver's seat and had an AK-47-type assault rifle on the passenger seat, police said. They said they found two other semiautomatic handguns, including one in a holster in a backpack.

"We don't have any idea why he had them or what, if anything, he was going to do with them," Columbus police Sgt. Michael Woods said. "But if you've got four guns in your car, you're up to no good."

The arrest came near the home of a witness set to testify against Clarett next week in the robbery case, Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien said.

When police tried to shock Clarett, they couldn't because of the vest and had to use a spray to subdue him.

Police said he weaved in and out of lanes, did a U-turn on a freeway and refused to leave the SUV after a spike stick flattened its tires.

Clarett's promising football career was derailed when he was suspended for the 2003 season after being charged with falsifying a police report. He dropped out of school, then sued and lost in an attempt to be included in the 2004 NFL draft. He was a surprise third-round pick by the Denver Broncos in the 2005 draft but was cut.

Earlier this year, he was charged with robbery and carrying a concealed weapon after authorities say he was identified by witnesses as the person who flashed a gun and robbed two people of a cellphone in an alley behind a Columbus lounge early on New Year's morning.

Assistant Franklin County Prosecutor Tim Mitchell asked a judge Wednesday to keep Clarett in jail and revoke his bond on the robbery charges, given that Clarett was arrested close to the home of Tywona Douglas, one of the people who identified him in the alley behind the bar.

Clarett's attorney, Nick Mango, said it was "probably unlikely" that Clarett would be able to post the higher bond, meaning he would stay in jail for the duration of his trial, which starts Monday.

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