The story of former first round draft pick Freddie Mitchell really just gets more and more pathetic every time we hear about him.
The latest news is that Mitchell is facing federal charges for allegedly recruiting professional athletes in a scheme to receive false tax returns, according to a report on FOX.com.
Mitchell will face charges down in Florida, along with Jamie Russ-Walls and Richard Walls, who allegedly claimed refunds ranging from $170,000 to $1.9 million. Mitchell’s role was to recruit professional athletes as customers. Their target was A.G, a pro athlete who paid a firm connected with Mitchell to do his taxes.
The indictment claims that Mitchell set up a company called Chameleon Enterprises to do the scam.
This is the latest for Mitchell, who has rightfully been one of Philadelphia’s least favorite athletes since he was selected in the first round of the 2001 draft (ahead of Reggie Wayne).
Mitchell did catch the 4th and 26 pass in the 2003 playoffs against Green Bay. But he infamously thanked his fans for being so great during the 2004 playoffs, and then he called out the secondary for the New England Patriots before Super Bowl XXXIX. He caught one pass in that game, two fewer than the Patriots’ secondary. His fiancee of two years also left him that month.
He was cut by the Eagles before the 2005 minicamps, and although he had tryouts with the Green Bay Packers (2005), Dallas Cowboys (2006), Cleveland Browns (2006), Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League (2007), Tennessee Titans (2007), and Baltimore Ravens (2008), he was not signed again. Not even by the Philadelphia Soul.
When he wasn’t taunting opposing fans at college football games, he worked as a substitute teacher in Indiana, where he lasted one week until he was fired for reportedly asking girls for their phone numbers.
He opened a BBQ restaurant in 2008, and was later questioned by police after a package containing seven pounds of marijuana was delivered to his store. A year later, the restaurant closed and Mitchell was named in a suit to for failure to make payments on the business.
Just three months later, he was pulled over for speeding in Philadelphia, where he was found to have an outstanding warrant for failure to pay child support, and was arrested on charges of being a fugitive from justice. He was released on $250,000 bail.
And now he’s back in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. Again.