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June 29, 2012

Crowell Dismissed

Running back Isaiah Crowell has been dismissed from the Georgia football team, according to an announcement Friday afternoon by head coach Mark Richt.

"We have a dedicated and committed group of men who are working hard to prepare for the coming season," said Richt in a statement. "Our total focus will be directed toward the team and this effort."

Crowell started seven games in 2011 and rushed for 850 yards on 185 carries.

His dismissal comes just over 12 hours after being arrested early Friday morning and charged with carrying a concealed weapon, carrying a weapon in a school zone and being in possession of a firearm with an altered ID mark.

Two of the charges are felonies, the other a misdemeanor.

Total bonds were originally set set at $7,500, but later raised to $9,500.

According to the Athens Clarke County booking report, Crowell was arrested by Athens police at 3:37 a.m., at which time he was booked into the Athens Clarke County jail. The county's online jail booking report states Crowell bonded out at 12:44 p.m.

A police spokesman told UGASports that Crowell's arrest came following an early-morning stop at a police checkpoint on East Campus Road and Green Street on the Georgia campus. Four other individuals were in the car, but they were not arrested.

According to the spokesman, Crowell's car was stopped at 2:20 when an officer reported smelling the odor of marijuana. Crowell's car was searched, no marijuana was found but police did locate a 9-mm Luger handgun with the altered serial number. The gun was found under the driver's seat.

As a freshman, Crowell battled a myriad of injuries while rushing for 850 yards his first - and perhaps last - year with the Bulldogs.

UGA Athletic Association rules stipulate that athletes arrested on felony charges are immediately suspended from the team.

The Bulldogs will now turn to Ken Malcome, along with true freshman Keith Marshall and Todd Gurley are expected to share the bulk of the running back duties for the Bulldogs this fall.

According to the official police report early Friday afternoon, Athens Clarke County police were doing a traffic check at East Campus and Green when Crowell's car was stopped at 2:20.

The officer approached Crowell and asked why he did not have his seatbelt on, at which time the Georgia running back said he had taken it off to reach for his things while approaching the check.

At that time, Officer Katharyn Thornton reported that she detected the smell of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle, which also carried Bulldog sophomore Quintavious Harrow, along with freshmen Josh Harvey-Clemons, Blake Tibbs and Sheldon Dawson.

The players said no, stating that they had been at a local club (Aftermath) and that probably was where the smell was from.

Crowell was then asked to step out of the Grand Marquis belonging to his mother Debbie Crowell, and after consenting to a search of his person and his car, no contraband was found. Harrow, Tibbs, Harvey-Clemons and Dawson were then subsequently searched, with no contraband found.

During the search of Harrow, another officer asked Crowell "why are you so nervous?"

After all parties were searched, Officer Thornton checked the passenger seat area, locating no contraband, before moving over to the driver's side.

After leaning down and looking under the driver's seat, a Luger 9-mm was found with the serial number scratched completely off.

Crowell was then placed under arrest and read his Miranda rights. However, Crowell told officers he wanted to talk, informing police that other people drive his car. He was asked if those other people included Harvey-Clemons, Harrow, Tibbs or Dawson. Crowell said no, "other people." Crowell denied knowing the gun was there.

Crowell's remaining four teammates were then allowed to drive the car away and the Bulldog running back was taken to the Athens Clarke County jail. A subsequent background check showed that Crowell did not have a previous criminal history. He told police he did not have a handgun permit.



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