National Football League linebacker Barkevious Mingo reportedly faces a charge of indecency with a child, sexual contact after his arrest by Arlington, Texas police late last week.
Under Texas law, indecency with a child is a second-degree felony and is punishable upon a conviction in a court of law of a minimum of two years behind bars and a maximum of 20 years, along with a fine of up to $10,000. Every criminal defendant is presumed innocent unless or until the court system, through a trial or another form of adjudication, establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
In March, Mingo, 30, signed a one-year contract with the Atlanta Falcons, but that deal is now null and void.
“After being made aware today of allegations involving Barkevious Mingo and gathering information on the matter, the Atlanta Falcons have terminated his contract,” the team announced late last night.
The pro football player’s lawyer insists, however, that the allegations that date back about two years are “completely baseless and untrue” and that his client is innocent and a “victim of a false claim.”
A statement from the Lukas Garcia, attorney for #Falcons LB Barkevious Mingo, who was recently charged with indecency with a child. Garcia calls the charge “completely baseless: pic.twitter.com/OksG4Xe414
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 10, 2021
Authorities released Mingo, who had turned himself in, on Friday morning pursuant to a $25,000 bond after his arrest the night before. The charge relates to alleged sexual contact with someone who is 16 years of age or younger.
The Cleveland Browns selected Mingo, who played college ball at Louisiana State University, with the sixth pick in the first round of the 2013 NFL draft. Since then, he has played for five other NFL teams, including the New England Patriots, the latter with which he won a championship ring in Super Bowl LI on February 5, 2017.
In a statement, the Arlington PD indicated that it is keeping the details of the Wingo case confidential for now.
“The incident stems from an investigation that the department is conducting. Due to the nature of the charges and age of the victim, no additional information is releasable at this time.”
Referencing the purported contents of a search warrant that was obtained by Sports Illustrated, the New York Times provided this alleged background:
According to the warrant, the alleged incident took place over the Fourth of July weekend in 2019 when Mingo was said to have invited a teenage family member and his male friend, another teenager, to visit the Six Flags Over Texas amusement park in Arlington and K1 Speed, a go-kart complex. They ate dinner at a steakhouse and Mingo paid for everything. Mingo also bought the boys sports gear that they had chosen on Nike.com.
On the night of July 4, the boys returned to a local hotel where Mingo was staying. The warrant states that Mingo made sexual advances at the boy while he was sleeping. Mingo then became more aggressive, trying to remove the boy’s underwear and having intercourse with him.
According to the Times, the boy’s mom complained to the cops in January 2021 (about a year and a half after the alleged incident), which prompted detectives in the Dallas-Fort Worth suburb to begin their investigation, which included obtaining the Nike sales receipts.
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