Davone Bess has not been an active player in the NFL for a few years. Yet he has found himself in the news again today, after an arrest in Arizona. It’s an unfortunate development for Bess, who was a talented receiver in the NFL but has had run-ins with the law before. Details are still somewhat scarce, but the aftermath of the arrest was Bess being held on three charges.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. He Was Arrested After Allegedly Fleeing From a Traffic Stop and Barricading Himself in His House
According to police officers in Gilbert, Arizona, Bess fled from a traffic stop near the San Tan Village Parkway at about midnight. Officers apparently found him driving around the neighborhood later in the night, and he barricaded himself in the car. He then ran from the car to his home and barricaded himself there, until the police were granted a warrant to enter the home. At 4:45 a.m. on Monday, he was taken into custody by police and SWAT officers.
Bess, for all of this, was charged with endangerment, felony flight, and failure to stop for a police officer.
2. Bess Was Also Arrested in 2014 and Charged with Disorderly Conduct and Resisting an Officer
Bess was also arrested in 2014, charged with disorderly conduct, resisting an officer, and battery on a law enforcement officer. The allegations from the officer at the airport the arrest took place were that he approached Bess, who the officer claimed was getting reported for strange behavior, and Bess allegedly responded by squeezing a cup of coffee with the intent to spill hot coffee on the officer. He then allegedly took off his shirt and moved into a fighting stance, and was arrested.
Bess was also restrained by police officers in 2013, ultimately being hospitalized against his will. Allegedly, Bess was screaming a number of things that included “Hide the guns” and “I want to get into the end zone; throw me the football.”
3. He Hasn’t Played in the NFL Since the 2013 Season with Cleveland
The 2014 arrest may have been the final straw for the Cleveland Browns, who were Bess’s employer in the 2013 season. In March of 2014, the Browns released Bess. Specific language in the contract actually helped protect the club in a scenario like Bess’s arrest, and so the Browns were no longer obligated to pay Bess 3.067 million in 2014, which had been guaranteed money.
Bess had not played the last two games of the season with Cleveland. According to the organization, he had been dealing with “serious family issues” that were causing him to miss practice. It was a rough season for Bess, who had signed a contract extension through 2016 soon after the initial trade to Cleveland.
4. He Played for the University of Hawaii After Losing a Scholarship to Oregon State
When he was younger, Bess actually received a scholarship to play at Oregon State University. But that scholarship was rescinded after his high school graduation when stolen weapons were allegedly found in his car and he was sentenced to 15 months in a youth rehabilitation facility.
While serving his time, Bess played on a football team that played other youth detention centers. A high school football connection got tape of Bess playing to June Jones, who was then the head coach for the University of Hawaii. Impressed, Jones brought Bess onto the team after his sentence. He became a star receiver at Hawaii, a first-team all-WAC conference player all 3 years. He left the school second all-time in career receiving yards.
5. He Had the Second Most Receptions Ever By an Undrafted Rookie in His First Season
Despite his impressive numbers in college, Bess went undrafted in the 2008 NFL Draft. Still, the Miami Dolphins were willing to take a chance on him, signing him as an undrafted rookie.
Bess was soon a focal point of the Dolphins offense his rookie season. He ended the year with 54 caught passes, the second most by an undrafted rookie, second only to Wayne Chrebet. The only other rookies that year to catch more passes than him were Eddie Royal and Desean Jackson.