Scandals revolving around professional athletes and drugs never shine a good light on those involved, no matter to what degree their involvement is either.

Montae Nicholson of the Washington Redskins has got the spotlight on him now due to a drug scandal of the worst kind – an alleged overdose that took place at the athlete’s home.

According to authorities, there was some pot and pills that were found at the home of NFL player Montae Nicholson. Police had searched the home after a night of partying that ended with a young woman who appeared to have overdosed.

Police had also found at the Ashburn residence some foil with residue on it during a search of the Washington Redskins safety’s home. There’s no report as of this time as to what the residue is on the foil or what it’s suspected to be.

The search was related to the death of a 21-year-old woman at the house last week.

The Washington Post had reported that the woman may have died from an overdose, without specification as to what the potential overdose stemmed from substance-wise.

The search warrant was made public tand doesn’t go into detail as to who the drugs might have belonged to or where they were found at Nicholson’s home when seized.

Nicholson and another man, Kyle Askew-Collins, had apparently dropped off Julia Crabbe at a nearby hospital Thursday, November 14th after the duo had spent some time with the young women and noticed something was gravely wrong with her.

The hospital staff commented on the state Crabbe had arrived to the hospital, noting that the young woman “appeared to be deceased” when she was dropped off and that there were signs she died of an overdose.

The attorney for the NFL player, Mark Dycio, said that his client didn’t know anything about the drugs that were found by police while they were at his home. 

Nicholson’s attorney told Justin Jouvenal of the Washington Post during an interview the following pertaining to the attention the case is getting and the scrutiny toward his client:

“Montae would have no knowledge of the drugs because they belonged to a guest. It’s a tragic story. It’s a tragedy that the news is focused on where she died instead of the drug epidemic ravaging the country.”

According to details gathered from the department investing the case, Justin Jouvenal had mentioned the following:

“Detectives with the sheriff’s office said a person, who is not identified, told them Crabbe, Nicholson, Askew-Collins and the person had traveled to the District on Wednesday to hang out and eat, according to the search warrant.”

According to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office, they concurred with the medical professionals as well, saying that Crabbe was showing signs of an overdose. While everything is speculative at this point, in time everything can be reasonably determined via various testing of the substances located in the home and of the deceased young woman.

However, it could take months for a toxicology test to determine what drugs Crabbe may have taken.

Apparently, a witness had told police that Kyle Askew-Collins, the other man who took Crabbe to the hospital, had called them and said that Crabbe was foaming at the mouth.

The warrant to search Nicholson’s home did not specify to whom the drugs belonged, and the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office said the investigation was ongoing.

Police and officials also noted that through the course of events leading to the young woman being taken to the hospital, that at no point did anyone call 911. A witness did proclaim that the hospital wasn’t far from the home and it would be quicker if they just took her there.

Just last week, the NFL made headlines over an assault debate.  It made us ask… 

At what point does the action of football players on the field go beyond a game and become a police matter? How do corporations, like the NFL and the NCAA, get a way with “self-governance and discipline? Why are certain non-game actions not considered criminal?

Case in point: The game between the Browns and the Steelers.  In case you missed it… here’s the deal.

Per the AP, in the final seconds of the game, Browns defensive end Myles Garrett ripped off Pittsburgh quarterback Mason Rudolph’s helmet.

He then swung the helmet at Rudolph, hitting him in the head. While Rudolph seemed to be uninjured by the blow, the fact remains that Garrett hit him with what appeared to be a Riddell SpeedFlex Precision Diamond helmet.

That particular helmet weighs between 7 and 10 lbs., according to the Fox Sports broadcast.  

Which leads me to ask how this is not considered assault with a deadly weapon, which is considered a felony offense, regardless of the actual injuries caused to the victim. If that is the wrong charge, how about aggravated battery?

There is actually a rule in the NFL that prohibits removal of a player’s helmet and using it as a weapon.

RULE 12, SECTION 2, ARTICLE 17.  USE OF HELMET AS A WEAPON. A player may not use a helmet that is no longer worn by anyone as a weapon to strike, swing at, or throw at an opponent.

 Penalty: For illegal use of a helmet as a weapon: Loss of 15 yards and automatic disqualification. If the foul is by the defense, it is also an automatic first down.

Yup…just a 15-yard penalty, an automatic first down and an automatic ejection from the game. Incidentally, the words ‘fight’ and ‘fighting’ do not appear in the rule book. They are referred to personal fouls or unnecessary roughness.

People are speculating that Garrett will be suspended 4 to 6 games, which he will likely appeal.

That is a slap on the wrist. He should be facing criminal charges. 

But instead, Garrett, Pouncey and the others deemed to have been involved in the ’fight’ will be fined $45,096, if this is their first offense.

If, at that same game, I was sitting in the stands and started arguing with the guy in front of me and threw a full can of beer at him, hitting him in the face, I am probably leaving the stadium in handcuffs. I most assuredly facing charges.

Some argue that Rudolph would have to press charges and file a complaint, which would violate the ‘code’.  However, an arrest can be made for the commission of a crime, even without a complaint from a victim.

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Search of NFL player's home after woman allegedly fatally overdosed turns up drugs

 

I am sure that the player’s association has something to do with the fact that what Garrett did is not considered criminal, but I cannot find their policy on an event like this.

Reaction from both teams came immediately after the game.

Cleveland coach Freddie Kitchens afterward called Garrett’s actions “embarrassing” and said there was “no excuse” for what Garrett had done.

“I’ve never seen that in my life,” Kitchens said. “It’s not good.”

Garrett wouldn’t go into the details of what happened or what led to his reaction, but he agreed with Kitchens’ characterization.

“What I did was foolish, and I shouldn’t allow myself to slip like that,” Garrett said. “That’s out of character, but a situation like that where it’s an emotional game, and I allowed myself to fall into those emotions with what happened.”

According to ESPN, the longest ban for a single on-field incident in NFL history is the five games Albert Haynesworth got in 2006 for stomping on Andre Gurode’s head.

Garrett said he has “no clue” if this would be his final game of the year, but Pouncey said he believes Garrett should be suspended for the rest of the season.

“Absolutely, 100 percent,” he said. “We’ll see how serious the NFL is about their players. … My man got hit in the head with a helmet.”

Pouncey said he was unconcerned with punishment he could face from the incident, telling reporters he “blacked out” and went into “protection mode” when the fight started.

“At that point, it’s bigger than football,” Pouncey said. “It’s protection. … He could have killed him. What if he’d hit in him the temple?”

And just like that, Maurkice Pouncey illustrated the point I am trying to make. There are moments and actions that transcend the game of football. And swinging a 7+ pound helmet at someone transcends the game.

I would be making the same argument if this had been the punter swinging a helmet. The size of the person is not the driving force.

Having said that, Garrett reportedly power cleans 440 lbs., and benches 485 lbs. This is not a small man. Had the helmet not turned over, and Rudolph caught the crown of the helmet, we might be having a different conversation today regarding his injuries. To his credit, Rudolph appeared to see the blow coming and turned his head.

 I want to share some reactions with you. These are tweets from current and former players, league officials and ESPN analysts.

“He’s done for the rest of the year.”– Dez Bryant

“Suspend him for the rest of the season.”– Louis Riddick

“One thing for sure #MasonRudolph will never try and fight at Defensive Lineman again.”– Johnathan Cyprien

You read that last one. Cyprien was either making light of the situation or insinuating that Rudolph got what he deserved.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if Garrett misses the rest of this season and half of next. It’s an ugly situation, Mason could have suffered a life altering injury. Football is an emotional sport but that was something different. “– Justin Forsett

You are correct Justin; it was something different. It was a felony.

Yet the harshest thing anyone has said was ‘suspension.’ What they should be talking about is how do they prevent that from happening again.

One way to send a clear message, charge the man with a crime.

 


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