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Authorities issued a warrant Friday for the arrest of three-time Pro Bowl defensive end Michael Bennett Malik Jefferson Jersey Bengals , who is accused of injuring a paraplegic woman as he tried get onto the field at last year’s Super Bowl to celebrate with his brother.
The Harris County district attorney’s office said a grand jury indicted the 32-year-old Bennett, acquired earlier this month by the Philadelphia Eagles, on a felony count of injury to the elderly.
Bennett was a spectator at the game at NRG Stadium in Houston in February 2017 when he tried to get onto the field immediately afterward to see his brother, Martellus Bennett, a tight end for the Patriots at the time. Prosecutors allege he pushed through security personnel, including a 66-year-old woman in a wheelchair who was a stadium employee and who had told him to use a different entrance to access the field. Bennett is also accused of pushing two other people, including another woman, and ignoring a request by a police officer to stop as he made his way onto the field.
Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said Bennett allegedly told the people he had pushed, ”You all must know who I am and I can own this (expletive). I’m going down to the field, whether you like it or not.”
Acevedo called Bennett ”morally bankrupt” for pushing the two women. Police said the disabled woman suffered a sprained shoulder when she was allegedly pushed by Bennett, hitting the back of her 800-pound Danny Shelton Jersey Elite , motorized wheelchair.
”Mr. Bennett may think that because he’s an NFL player and some time passed … he may have thought that, number one, rules don’t apply to him, number two, he doesn’t have to respect the dignity of a paraplegic woman who’s trying to earn a living,” Acevedo said at a news conference.
Acevedo said a detective did not actively start working the case until September because the police department had prioritized more serious cases.
The charge of injury to the elderly can be filed if a person intentionally or knowingly causes injury to a person 65 or older. It carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. County authorities say they’re talking with Bennett’s legal team about surrendering on the charge.
The Eagles acquired Bennett from the Seattle Seahawks, where he became one of the dominant defensive linemen in the game. Bennett had 8 sacks last season and has 54 in his nine-year career. Bennett has three years remaining on his contract, with a base salary of just $1.65 million in 2018. That number jumps to $6 million in 2019 and $7.5 million in 2020.
”We are aware of the situation involving Michael Bennett and are in the process of gathering more information,” the Eagles said. ”Because this is an ongoing legal matter, we will have no further comment at this time.”
Bennett’s agent Jonathan Cooper Jersey 49ers , Doug Hendrickson, did not respond to a message seeking comment Friday.
Atlanta is set to add another expansion franchise 鈥?this time in esports.
The Overwatch League announced Thursday that Atlanta will join the global, city-based esports circuit in 2019, its second season. The team will be managed by Atlanta Esports Ventures, a partnership between Cox Enterprises and Province Inc.
"We've had our eye on Atlanta for a long time," said Pete Vlastelica, president and CEO of Activision Blizzard Esports Leagues. "It is near the top of the list of remaining Overwatch cities in the world, certainly in North America."
The league also announced a new franchise in Guangzhou, China. It plans to add four more franchises before next season, which would bring the total to 18.
The Overwatch League explored awarding Atlanta one of its 12 inaugural franchises but couldn't find an ownership fit for the first season. The league is hoping to capture some of the same enthusiasm backing Atlanta United of the MLS. The soccer club has shattered just about every MLS attendance record since joining the league in 2017.
"There's a lot of Overwatch players there, and not just in Atlanta but in the Southeast Chiefs Cheap Jerseys ," Vlastelica said. "Between Texas, where we have two franchises, and Florida, where we have a franchise, there's a lot of America and a lot of video game players and a lot of Overwatch players. And it's just a great sports market."
Province executive Paul Hamilton will serve as Atlanta's president and general manager. He's a lifelong esports enthusiast and hardcore fan of Blizzard's 6 vs. 6 first-person shooter. He plans to be hands-on regarding player acquisition and roster management.
"I probably have more strong feelings about players than most of the people that are running these teams," Hamilton said. "That may end up not being a good thing, but we'll see."
Player contracts from the league's inaugural season will expire Sept. 9, and the league's expansion franchises will be granted an exclusive free agency window from then until Oct. 7 to fill the bulk of their rosters. The minimum salary for players in the league's inaugural season was $50,000.
Hamilton has been in contact with people from the AMB Group, Arthur Blank's company that manages the Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United. Hamilton is hoping to build local support in much the same way the soccer team did.
"They really engaged the hardcore fan first," Hamilton said. "They wanted the people that are tried and true."
The Guangzhou franchise was awarded to Nenking Group Tarvarius Moore Color Rush Jersey , which also manages the Guangzhou Long Lions of the Chinese Basketball Association.
Atlanta and Guangzhou have yet to announce team names or unveil logos. Expansion fees were not disclosed. The 12 inaugural franchises were reportedly awarded last year for $20 million each, with New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and New York Mets owner Jeff Wilpon among the initial buyers.
Like the rest of the Overwatch League, Atlanta and Guangzhou will be based out of Southern California next season. The league is hosting all matches at Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California, until its franchises can find arenas and build the infrastructure necessary for esport events in their host cities. The league hopes to begin holding true home-and-away matches in its third season.
The league's 14 franchises currently span three continents, including first-year champion London, runner-up Philadelphia, Seoul and Shanghai. Vlastelica said the league would likely announce a 15th team in the next week or two, with future expansion focused mostly outside the United States.
London beat Philadelphia in the league's first Grand Finals at Barclays Center in New York last week. The first night of the two-night championship was broadcast live on ESPN, a first for the traditional sports network in prime time.
Follow Jake Seiner on Twitter: s://jake_seiner
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