Jaguars DE Dante Fowler charged with three misdemeanors in Pinellas County

Jaguars defensive end Dante Fowler has been formally charged on three misdemeanor crimes in Pinellas County, according to court records.

Fowler was arrested on July 18 and charged with simple battery, criminal mischief, and petit theft, deputies said.

He was formally charged on August 10, according to the court records.

The incident occurred in an apartment complex parking lot where the 2015 first-round pick was driving through. Deputies said Fowler got into a verbal altercation with a man in the parking lot. The man had made a comment about Fowler's driving, according to an arrest report.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office jail log shows Fowler was arrested just after 9 p.m. that night in St. Petersburg. He was released after posting $650 bond on the two charges at 1:43 a.m.

Deputies said Fowler hit the man, knocked off his glasses, and stepped on them. He then took the victim's recently purchased grocery bag, including liquor, and threw it into a lake.  The victim was not hurt.

According to Miami-Dade County court records, Fowler was charged with assault of a police officer and resisting arrest in March 2016.

Those charges were eventually dropped in December 2016 because Fowler went through a pretrial program, according to court records.

A Jaguars spokesperson said the team would not comment on a closed case.

Fowler also has a history of traffic violations, at least eight since December 2015, spread between Alachua, Duval, and Pinellas, according to county records.

Bradford County records show that Fowler had two additional violations this year.

The team consistently hammered home Fowler’s immaturity issues during press conferences last season. He drew the ire of former Jaguars head coach Gus Bradley and current defensive coordinator Todd Wash last season on a few occasions due to penalties.

However, Wash changed his tune shortly after the completion of the offseason program in June.

“Dante has matured a lot,” Wash said. “You [saw] him a little more and more as the season went on last year. He is more focused on the little details. He is definitely here early in the building a lot more. You just see a young man mature, which is really good to see because he is a good football player.”

While Fowler's maturity on the field was evident to the staff during the offseason program, these charges may offer a different outlook on the player off-the-field.

Fowler offered up an apology following the arrest.

"First, I would like to start off by apologizing to the organization of the Jacksonville Jaguars and also the city of Jacksonville for my actions, for what happened, what went down," Fowler said.

"I just want let people know and everybody know that's not me as a person. I'm a better person than that, and it won't happen again."

He has a court date set for September 11. The appearance will come one day after the Jaguars' season opener against the Texans in Houston.

Fowler missed his entire rookie season with a torn ACL. He appeared in all 16 games last season and produced 32 tackles, four sacks, and five pass breakups. 

The Jaguars hedged their bets at the defensive end position this offseason. Along with returning sack leader, Yannick Ngakoue, the team has added Pro Bowl defensive end, Calais Campbell, third-round pick Dawuane Smoot, and special teams ace Lerentee McCray to the fold.

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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