Despite increased scrutiny, two NFL players arrested in separate incidents
(Reuters) – Police in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Minneapolis arrested two professional football players on trespassing and other charges, authorities and local media reported Sunday.
The arrests of Miami Dolphins defensive end Derrick Shelby and Minnesota Vikings tackle Tom Johnson came as the National Football League has come under nationwide scrutiny following a domestic violence incident involving one of its players.
In Fort Lauderdale, Shelby, 25, was charged with trespass and resisting arrest without violence after an apparent incident at a local nightclub, police said.
Detective DeAnna Greenlaw said Shelby was reportedly causing a disturbance at the club at around 2 a.m. on Saturday.
“Security officers employed at this establishment and uniformed Fort Lauderdale police officers asked Shelby to leave the establishment and he refused. He was subsequently taken into custody,” Greenlaw said in an email.
A booking photo published by local media showed the third-year Dolphins player with apparent bruises on his lower lip and left cheek.
Shelby’s attorney, Daniel Rosenberg, said the player maintains his innocence. “There’s a lot of conflicting information about his arrest,” he told the Orlando Sun Sentinel newspaper.
In a brief statement, the Miami Dolphins said they were aware of the reports about Shelby and were gathering information.
In Minneapolis, Johnson was arrested in the early hours of Sunday for disorderly conduct and trespass, local media and online jail records showed.
No other details were immediately available, but Johnson posted bail and is due in court on Oct. 17, according to the records from Hennepin County, Minnesota, which includes Minneapolis.
A Vikings spokesman said by email that the team was aware of the matter involving Johnson.
“We are continuing to gather information and will have further comment at the appropriate time,” said the spokesman.
The arrests happened just weeks after the website TMZ.com published a video from inside a New Jersey casino elevator showing former Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice punching his fiancee, now his wife, unconscious.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell initially gave Rice a two-game suspension over the incident, then indefinitely suspended him following the release of the video.
The league’s uneven response has raised questions about the credibility and integrity of the NFL and Goodell, one of the most powerful figures in sports.
(Reporting by Daniel Wallis in Denver; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)