NFL free agent Antonio Brown has pleaded no contest to charges relating to the battery of a household goods trucker outside his South Florida home earlier this year.
On Jan. 21, police responded to a disturbance call at Brown’s Hollywood, Florida, home, where the moving truck driver said Brown and his trainer hit him. According to court documents, the NFL star refused to pay an additional $4,000 to the driver to release his household goods. A fight ensued with the driver deciding to leave but no before Brown reportedly threw a rock as the trucker drove away, causing a small dent on the moving truck and chipping the paint.
When the driver returned later, Brown paid the $4,000 for the move but refused to pay $860 for damaging the truck, police said. The driver returned to his truck to call his company, and Brown pulled him out of the vehicle, while the trainer grabbed the keys, officials said. Brown, the trainer and others began removing boxes from the truck, until the driver told them the boxes belonged to another client.
According to the court documents, Brown fled the scene before police arrived. Brown’s trainer was arrested and taken into custody. Brown turned himself in two days later.
As part of this new plea deal with Broward County prosecutors, Brown pleaded no contest to burglary with battery, burglary of an unoccupied conveyance and criminal mischief. He will serve two years of probation, undergo a psychological evaluation and follow-up treatment, attend an anger management course, perform 100 hours of community service and follow a stay-away order from the truck driver and the moving company owner. The Judge in the case withheld adjudication, allowing Brown to have a clean record if he successfully completes his probation term.
According to a public statement by Brown’s attorney, Carson Hancock, Hancock believes that the case resulted from a misunderstanding between Brown and the moving company about payments and should have been handled as a civil dispute. “Rather than engage in a protracted legal case, Mr. Brown decided to resolve this matter in an expeditious manner in consideration of his family and his football career,” Hancock said.
Brown was, at one time, one of the NFL’s top wide receivers during his nine seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He was then traded to the Oakland Raiders, but released without playing a regular season game after several off-the-field incidents. He was then signed by the New England Patriots, only to be cut less than two weeks later after being accused of sexual misconduct by two women in a 10-day period. In his one game with the Patriots, Brown had four catches for 56 yards and a touchdown.