Today’s Investigative Special Report July 19, 2012 “Dealing With Today’s Law Enforcement Specialized Investigations” “Law Enforcement Is the Baby-sitter of All-Star Athletes Criminal Behavior”

By Lawrence W. Daly, MSc

He steps up to the podium and he tells the world how sorry he is that he was arrested for assaulting his girlfriend, shooting himself, assaulting a fan, and on and on. In today’s success and major financial contracts, famous athletes are indirectly being baby-sat by law enforcements finest. Just last Saturday night another athlete became a casualty of his own success and loss of common sense.

Law enforcement across America is being faced with a growing number of professional athletes who commit crimes. On Saturday, Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch after weaving from one lane to the next on Interstate 880 in Oakland, California was arrested for investigation of DUI. He was there to be a part of the Oakland Tech High School alumni 6th annual Fam 1st Football Camp in service of Oakland youth.
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 08:  Marshawn Lynch #24 ...
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 08: Marshawn Lynch #24 of the Seattle Seahawks and Justin Forsett #20 pose during player introductions before taking on the New Orleans Saints during the 2011 NFC wild-card playoff game at Qwest Field on January 8, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)

Lynch’s actions may have a ripple effect in the Seattle community especially to those children who looked at him as their role model and hero. What will he tell those in the community who have supported him these past two seasons and believed he is an integras man. Although being 26 years old, his actions, if true are unacceptable.

Law enforcement has become the baby-sitter of professional athletes, their criminal conduct, bad behavior, and their lack of abiding by the local, county, state, and federal laws. Lynch who is not a virgin of the criminal justice system, definitely knew that his actions were criminal and he will need to put together a positive image campaign. There are already trade rumors in the works.

Lynch is now scheduled to appear in court on August 14th to either be formally charged, a trial date set, or a potential dismissal if the chemical tests which he took turns out to demonstrate that something else was a miss. It is important to give the individual who is arrested the opportunity to refute the criminal allegations.

Turning to the professional teams these athletes play for, what is it they can say to the community? Maybe, just maybe if the criminal charges are proven to be accurate and true, there should be an indefinite suspension of his/her ability to play in their designated league. The punishment which currently exists for these misdemeanor criminals needs to be held responsible and accountable for their criminal conduct.

English: Adrian L. Peterson in 2009 NFC Wild C...
English: Adrian L. Peterson in 2009 NFC Wild Card Game (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Lynch is not alone in his criminal conduct. Just recently Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was accused of resisting arrest after police say it took 3 officers to subdue him at a club. The question which comes to mind is what is a professional athlete doing at a night club; being placed in a vulnerable situation where his integrity and credibility is put into question?

Law enforcement officials who are placed in a very awkward position do not have the necessary training or education in how to deal with professional athletes who are either high on drugs or alcohol, acting violent and assaultive towards them, or simply out of control. Law enforcement is trained and educated in how to deal with individuals who are high on drugs, alcohol, and are combative, but the attitude is “really,” this is an individual who is being paid 31 million dollars by a professional team, and he/she is criminally out of control.

Law enforcement needs to speak out against these individuals who are alleged role models in their communities. You would assume that Lynch, Peterson, and the rest of the athletes are highly educated and disciplined. It begs one to question why is it these individuals need to be hanging out at party spots such as night clubs, private parties, and so forth.

Justin Blackmon
Justin Blackmon (Photo credit: ShuttrKing|KT)
On June 6, 2012, Justin Blackmon of the Jacksonville Jaguars was arrested for Driving Under The Influence (DUI). The problem with Blackmon’s arrest is he allegedly blew 0.24 into the breathalyzer. In 2010 1.41 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics. Every day in America, another 28 people die as a result of drunken driving crashes.

The statistics are staggering and the professional athletes are part of the problem not the solution. So how do the professional athletes stop being part of the problem? What stance are the professional teams willing to take to stop the non-sense of its players? If the problem begins at the negotiation table when these athletes sign their contracts, just maybe some of these young men/women will stop being part of the problem and begin being part of the solution.

English: Tim Tebow, a player on the Denver Bro...
English: Tim Tebow, a player on the Denver Broncos American football team. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
You can ridicule Tim Tebow all you want, but if professional athletes lived by his moral code there may be less arrests. Someone needs to step forward and begin talking about where these athletes expend their time when they are not on the field or court.

It will take a leader(s) in all professional sports to make amends. If Tebow was to step forward and talk about the moral code he lives by and send a challenge to those who get paid to entertain, it is possible other professional athletes would step forward.

The problem isn’t just with current professional athletes but with former professional athletes. Lawrence Taylor a former linebacker for the New York Giants was arrested and convicted and sentenced to 6 years on probation for his sexual misconduct with a female prostitute, who happened to be a minor. O.J. Simpson was acquitted of the death of his former wife, Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman; only to be convicted of Robbery and a sort-of other crimes.

The need to establish moral behavioral clauses in professional athlete’s contracts from the beginning of their professional careers to their ending of the sport needs to be seriously considered by the professional associations such as the NFL and NBA, where it seems the majority of the professional athletes arrested come from. These moral clauses would simply state if you are arrested and convicted of any crime, you will receive a life-time suspension of the sport you play. The punishment needs to be serious, financially devastating, and a reminder to others who expend their off-time criminally misbehaving.

Athletes who have the belief that their teams can’t be as great without them need to understand that their actions have consequences. Law enforcement should not be the baby-sitters of today’s athletes. Law enforcement have better things to do, such as protecting and serving their community.
Justin Blackmon
Justin Blackmon (Photo credit: ShuttrKing|KT)
Judges need to levy heavy fines and long jail sentences for those professional athletes who can’t live within the laws of America. Too often professional athletes are given plea bargains, placed on probation, and given a slap on their wrist.

These athletes do not understand that when they take off their uniforms their criminal behavior and actions have a major effect on children who look to them to be their super-heroes. Children don’t understand why their hero would get behind the wheel of a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol and drive.

Children don’t understand why their hero would hit their girlfriends or wives demonstrating anger and rage. Children don’t understand why law enforcement places handcuffs on their hero eventually taking them to jail. Children and adults don’t understand why their hero’s let them down.

In a capitalistic society there are only a few who make the money that a professional athlete is capable of making. The professional athlete demands financial high contracts only to turn around and behave in a criminal fashion.

The criminal behavior of these professional athletes is generally not a one time appearance in front of a judge. In reference to the repeat behavior of the professional athlete, Marshawn Lynch isn’t new to the criminal justice system. At the age of 26 years old you would think that Lynch would have learned his lesson. He pleaded guilty in March 2009 to a misdemeanor gun charge in Los Angeles. He was sentenced to 80 hours of community service and three years' probation, and was suspended three games by the league for violating the NFL personal conduct policy.
That was Lynch's second run-in with the law following a hit-and run-accident in Buffalo in May 2008. In 
Booze? Hookers? Yachts? -- IT CAN'T BE TRUE !!...
Booze? Hookers? Yachts? --
.....item 1..UM scandal shouldn't
 leave us 'shocked'
 (August 25, 2011) ...
(Photo credit: marsmet463)
the earlier incident, he pleaded guilty to a traffic violation and admitted to driving away after striking a woman with his car near Buffalo's downtown bar district. Now this will be the third trip to the courtroom for Lynch.
Until the investigation is completed by the Seattle Seahawks Lynch’s contract needs to be reevaluated. His play on the football field of being an excellent running back may be an asset to the team, but his criminal behavior can’t be tolerated. If his criminal actions are allowed to be put on a shelf this will send a resounding message to other professional athletes, especially those on the Seattle Seahawk team that acting in a criminal manner is tolerated and there are no consequences for illicit behavior.
As stated above he was suspended by the NFL for three games for his prior misconduct. The NFL should do their own investigation and at the conclusion of their investigation if it is determine by a reasonable standard that he committed the criminal act, he should be suspended for the entire 2012-2013 NFL season, and his absence will include not being paid. During his time away from the game, he will be required to do 160 hours of community services in the Seattle community for a year.
The suggestions above need to be harsh. The message needs to be loud and clear that no longer will professional sports take care of those who act out criminally. Moral clauses need to include that if a professional athlete is found to be at a night club, private parties where alcohol and drugs are found to be present, act in any criminal fashion, then they will immediately be suspended until a complete and thorough investigation is conducted.
Further, the cost of the investigation will come out of the athlete’s pay-check. 
Football player Adrian Peterson when he played...
Football player Adrian Peterson when he played at the University of Oklahoma (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Why should the community or professional organizations pay for the misconduct and criminal behavior of professional athletes who are supposed to be role models to millions of children worldwide?
If society expects these entertainers to be an upstanding citizen then their million dollars contracts should be applauded. If the NFL and NBA don’t begin to enforce harsh punishments on their athletes, what will happen the next time a professional athlete gets behind the wheel of his/her vehicle and hits someone with their vehicle killing them. Enough should be enough.
Law enforcement has done their baby-sitting duties, now it is up to the professional teams, professional organizations, and the courts to levy heavy penalties for criminal conduct by professional athletes.
The above suggestions are serious and should be considered by those who are in charge. The professional athlete needs to understand that they are replaceable and maybe just maybe they will begin thinking about their future behavior and the serious consequences that will be a part of their criminal behavior.

Lawrence W. Daly
Kent, WA

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