Colts’ Joe Lefeged released from jail, still faces weapons charges
Lefeged was arrested in Northwest Washington, just after midnight on Saturday after police initially pulled over the white Camaro he was a passenger in for speeding. But according to the charging papers, the driver of the car sped away. Later, the police found the car abandoned a little way down the road. Officers also caught him and another man, who was a passenger in the car, away on foot in opposite directions.
During the search of the vehicle, the police recovered a .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun from under the front passenger seat, where Lefeged had been sitting. Receipts found in the vehicle show that the gun was purchased by Lefeged back in February. Although he had paperwork for the gun from the Maryland State police, the firearm had not been registered in Washington.
Police say they also smelled marijuana in the car and found an open bottle of alcohol in the center console.
Lefeged faces multiple gun charges from the arrest, including carrying a firearm without a license, having an unregistered firearm in the district, possessing unregistered ammunition and possessing a firearm in a motor vehicle. He was also charged with the possession of an open container of alcohol in a motor vehicle.
Prosecutors said Lefeged’s case was automatically referred to a grand jury since he waived his right to a preliminary hearing, and no follow-up court dates have been set as yet. However, Judge Frederick Sullivan, who oversaw Lefeged’s case at D.C. Superior Court on Tuesday, warned the player about future issues.
"You get caught with a weapon or some drugs, you're going to jail," said Sullivan. "The flight problem bothers me more than anything, but that's for a judge down the road."
The decision to release Lefeged on his own recognizance, after three days in jail, came against the prosecution’s request that the 25-year-old should be held without bond due to the nature of the offense.
"This is a case involving a traffic stop, indicia of drug use, flight from police, recovery of an open container," said U.S. Attorney Ben Schrader. "The gun was loaded with one round in the chamber and 12 rounds in the clip.”
However, while exiting the jail on Tuesday, Lefeged told WJLA-TV that he was sorry for the arrest and the case against him had been “drummed up.”
“I would like to just apologize to the Colts community apologize to my family for this even being brought up,” said, Lefeged. “I am not going to talk about the case right now until I talk to the Colts organization and have my lawyer with me.”
Lefeged’s attorney claimed his client is “an exemplary citizen never been in trouble before and we are hoping we will be able to work this out.”
The Indianapolis Colts said in a statement released following Lefeged’s arrest that they are aware of the situation and won’t made further public comments until they have gathered more details.