Patriotsí Alfonzo Dennard convicted of felony assault
A jury began deliberating on the case Tuesday and found Alfonzo Dennard guilty of felony charge and a misdemeanor count of resisting arrest, Lancaster County Attorney Joe Kelly confirmed. However, Alfonzo Dennard was acquitted on misdemeanor third-degree assault charge against another man.
Alfonzo Dennard could face five-years’ of sentence alone on the felony charge for assaulting a police officer. The resisting arrest charge adds another year to his prison sentence. The 23-year-old Alfonzo Dennard is scheduled to be sentenced in a hearing on April 11.
Joe Kelly wasn’t decided on whether his office would push for Alfonzo Dennard to be sentenced prison time. Since it is a first time offense, Alfonzo Dennard could avoid jail time if he is given probation on the felony and misdemeanor charges.
Meanwhile, Alfonzo Dennard remains free on bond, his attorney Terry Dougherty revealed.
"We're disappointed that he was convicted, but that's the jury's verdict," said Terry Dougherty. "Now we need to turn our attention to the sentencing phase of the trial."
Alfonzo Dennard was arrested on April 21 while out with his family and friends at a Lincoln bar last year. As the bar was closing and letting people out, a police officer noticed Alfonzo Dennard in a heated verbal altercation with another person. As the dispute escalated officers and other people approached to break up the fight, according to police report. An officer approached Alfonzo Dennard and told him twice that he "needed to leave the area." But as he was walking away Alfonzo Dennard threw a punch at another person, cited the affidavit.
Officer Ben Kopsa attempted handcuff Alfonzo Dennard but he resisted arrest, before punching Kopsa in the face as well.
While Alfonzo Dennard acknowledged during the trial that he may have resisted arrest, the 2011 Big Ten defensive back denied assaulting the police officer.
The incident occurred five days before the 2012 NFL draft. Due to his arrest Alfonzo Dennard, who was viewed as a top cornerback prospect heading into the 2012 NFL draft, slipped several spots and was selected in the seventh round by the New England Patriots.
Alfonzo Dennard made seven starts, including during both postseason games for the New England Patriots last season. The former Nebraska standout finished with 34 tackles, three interceptions returning one for a touchdown and seven pass defenses in his rookie season.
Aside from the prison sentence, Alfonzo Dennard could also be suspended by the NFL for his arrest and conviction on both felony assault and misdemeanor resisting arrest charges.