Much to the disappointment of many who jumped on last week’s most bizarre story, the Georgia football team is not full of guys who slap around fellow taxi patrons for their own enjoyment. Last week when the story broke that brought us the serendipitous meeting of bratwurst and a taxi-van, I posted on the DawgVent that there were basically four possible outcomes. The scenarios generally went like this:
1. Everything alleged turns out to be true, the four suspects are indeed UGA football players, and charges are pressed.
2. The four suspects are UGA football players, something happened in the cab, but police don’t find anything worth filing charges over. The case will be closed, but a lot of questions will remain if this just disappears.
3. The other facts are correct, but the four men involved have nothing to do with UGA football. It could be a case of mistaken identity.
4. The allegations turn out to be wrong or made up.
We know now that the correct answer was heavy on number 3 with a small peppering of option number 2. According to the AJC’s Tim Tucker, no Georgia football player will be charged in the incident. There was one player among the four, but he “acted as a peace maker.” Police will still pursue action against others in the group, but they are residents of Heard County and not associated with the program.
So it sounds as if the allegations have some validity – something had to have happened in the van for the Athens police to push on with a case against three non-residents. But the claim by one of the victims that “all…were UGA football players” was quite wrong. Only one of the four was a Georgia player, and his role was neglected in the initial report. We don’t know whether the mis-identification of the suspects as UGA football players was just mistaken identity, malicious (well – they were all big and black, right?), or that the claim of a witness that “none of us were particularly drunk” might have been a slight understatement.
That’s pretty much the end of it as far as the football program is concerned. I’m sure this news is what Mark Richt was itching to get at over the weekend. The especially curious among us will learn more as the warrants are issued and any investigation goes forward. There’s only one Georgia player on the current roster from Heard County, but that fact doesn’t necessarily imply his involvement in this incident (and good on him for doing the right thing if he was the player involved).