Running back Wes Brown was fighting to regain his spot in the Maryland Terrapins‘ starting lineup, but after his arrest for second-degree assault, theft and wiretapping, he’ll be lucky to stay on the team’s roster.
Unfortunately, this wasn’t your typical college football offseason arrest for disorderly conduct/DUI/assault.
According to The Washington Post report, Brown is a “person of interest” in a non-fatal shooting in Baltimore. He made arrangements to meet with the Baltimore PD, but he shoved an officer during the questioning and took off. Brown was apprehended and arrested about a quarter a mile away.
In addition to assaulting the officer, Brown was also charged with “wiretapping” for recording part of the conversation with the officers on a cellphone, and for theft, because the cellphone wasn’t his. (A Baltimore PD spokesman told The Post that charge could be dropped if the owner, reportedly a friend, testifies he or she lent it to Brown.)
Brown has been suspended from the university — not just the football team — during the investigation, but it’s hard to imagine the sophomore continuing his career with the Terps if he’s found guilty of any of these charges.
Terps head football coach Randy Edsall has a reputation for being a tough disciplinarian. The man frowns on hats and do-rags indoors; he’s certainly not going to take kindly to someone taking a swing at a police officer.
Obviously, the investigation will have to play out, but it doesn’t look good. Getting physical with police when he was being questioned about a shooting and then running just makes him look guilty, even if he wasn’t involved. If he wasn’t in trouble before, he is now.
The legal system might need to update its terminology to join the digital era, but “wiretapping” is also suspicious. Was Brown recording the conversation so he could share it with someone else, potentially someone who was involved in the shooting? Or, knowing how things like cellphone videos and police dashboard cameras have been used as evidence, did he just want a record of the interaction in case it became necessary later? And why was he using someone else’s cellphone?
The public may or may not eventually get those answers, but at least for the foreseeable future, it looks like Maryland is down to a two-man competition for starting running back.