There are many NFL players who have been arrested for offenses ranging from misdemeanors to much more serious crimes, such as murder. Here are ten high-profile NFL players who have been arrested.
- Probably the most famous NFL player arrested, and for the most serious offense, is O.J. Simpson. In 1994, Simpson was arrested for the murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman, and was acquitted. In 2007 Simpson was arrested and charged with kidnap, armed robbery, and assault in a case involving sports memorabilia Simpson tried to take by force. He was convicted and sentenced to up to 33 years in prison.
- Another NFL player arrested for murder is Rae Carruth. The Carolina Panthers player was convicted of conspiracy to commit murder in the 1999 shooting death of Cherica Adams, who was pregnant with his child. Adams was driving home from a date with Carruth and was shot; she called 911 and answered questions in the hospital, where she named Carruth as the person responsible. He is serving a sentence of 18 to 24 years.
- Leonard Little is another NFL player arrested for the death of another person, this time in a 1998 DUI accident. The Rams defensive end pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter for a drunk driving accident where he hit another car, killing a woman. Little was sentenced to 90 days in a work house, 1,000 hours of community service, and four years of probation. In 2004, Little had another DUI arrest.
- Michael Vick is a current NFL player who was arrested. The former Atlanta Falcons quarterback was arrested in 2007 for running a dogfighting ring. After pleading guilty, Vick was sentenced to 23 months in federal prison, was released in May 2009, and was picked up by the Philadelphia Eagles for the 2009 season.
- Michael Irvin, former wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys, is an NFL player who has been arrested numerous times. Irvin was arrested in 1996 and pleaded no contest to a felony cocaine charge; in 2005, he was arrested on a misdemeanor drug charge. Irvin was arrested in February 2010, for an alleged rape that took place in a Florida hotel in 2007.
- Dave Meggett, former running back for the New York Giants, is another NFL player arrested for crimes of a sexual nature. Meggett was arrested in 1990 for soliciting sex from an undercover officer; in 1998 he was arrested for sexual assault, but the charges were dropped. In 2006 Meggett was arrested for sexual battery, and received probation; in 2009, he was arrested for rape.
- Mark Ingram, is also an NFL player arrested multiple times. The former receiver, who played for the Giants, was arrested in 1999 for failure to make child support payments. He was arrested in 2001, driving a stolen vehicle in which counterfeit money was found. He was arrested for bank fraud, money laundering, and bail jumping, after he failed to appear to start serving his sentence.
- Cincinnati Bengal Chris Henry is another NFL player arrested more than once, and in fact may hold the record: he was arrested five times in less than three years, on charges including DUI, gun possession, and marijuana. Henry was killed in a traffic accident in 2009.
- Tank Johnson is one more NFL player (Bears, Cowboys) who was arrested several times for charges ranging from possession of a hand gun, aggravated assault, and possession of unlicensed firearms.
- The final NFL player to be arrested is Lawrence Phillips, who was charged with assault with a deadly weapon for driving his car into a group of teenagers in 2005, while he was wanted on a charge of domestic violence. Phillips pleaded no contest to domestic violence in 1996, and in 1997 for hitting a woman in a nightclub.
While the ten NFL players listed here are not the only NFL players who have been arrested, they or their crimes are certainly ten of the most notorious.
OJ Simpson, CNN
Rae Carruth, North Carolina Department of Corrections
Leonard Little, USA Today
Michael Vick, CNN
Michael Irvin, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Dave Meggett, North Carolina Department of Corrections
Mark Ingram, NY Daily News
Chris Henry, Fox News
Tank Johnson, Reuters
Lawrence Phillips, USA Today