Can You Catch a Ball? Then You Could be Pardoned for Murder

You don’t have to be 007 to get a (US, Canada) pardon for your sins - even those with deathly consequences. In fact, you can be #15, #52, #89, … just like movie stars and rock stars, sports stars have been known to endure the lightest of knuckle-rappings. Where there is money, there is leniency. How much? The numbers below show this decade’s most legal-agile athletes.

Dany Heatley, February 2005

dany heatley criminal

heatley car crash

Sport: Forward for the Ottawa Senators, NHL
Crime: Second-degree vehicular homicide, driving too fast for conditions, failure to maintain a lane, and speeding in connection with car crash that killed teammate and friend Dan Snyder.
Potential sentence: 20 years in prison, with fines totalling $5,000 US.
Sentence received: 3 years probation, limited driving privledges, 150 speeches about the dangers of speeding.

Ray Lewis, February 2000

ray lewis criminal

Sport: Linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens, NFL
Crime: Lewis and two companions were charged with the stabbing murders of Jacinth Baker and Richard Lollar. Lewis plea bargained and plead guilty for the reduced misdemeanor charge of obstruction of justice in exchange for testifying against his two companions.
Potential sentence: Life in prison.
Sentence received: 1 year probation, fined $250,000 by the NFL, and over $1,000,000 in settlements with the victims’ families.

Michael Vick, July 2007

michael vick criminal

Sport: Quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons, NFL
Crime: Operating a six-year long unlawful dog fighting venture on his property. Vic was accused of directly participating in the dog fights and the executions of dogs who lost, financing the operation and personally handling thousands of dollars in related gambling activities. Vick plea bargained and plead guilty for one charge of conspiracy to operate an interstate dog fighting ring.
Potential sentence: 5 years in prison.
Sentence received: 23 months in prison

Canadian comic Jay Malone sarcastically and hilariously berates Vick

Mark Chmura, April 2000
chmura criminal

Sport: Tight end for the Green Bay Packers, NFL
Crime: Accused of child enticement and third degree sexual assault on the 17-year-old babysitter of his children.
Potential sentence: 40 years in prison and $200,000 in fines.
Sentence received: Found innocent of all charges.

Kobe Bryant, July 2003

kobe bryant crimanl?

kobe bryant legal picture

Sport: Point guard for the Los Angeles Lakers, NBA
Crime: Accused of sexually assaulting a 19-year-old hotel employee.
Potential sentence: 4 years to life in prison.
Sentence received: Case dismissed.

Game on! Crimes Committed During Gameplay

Marty McSorley, February 2000
Marty McSorley criminal

Sport: Played defenseman for the Boston Bruins, NHL
Crime: Charged with assault with a weapon when he swung his stick and hit Vancouver Canucks’ Donald Brashear in the head, resulting in a grade three concussion.
Potential sentence: 10 years in prison.
Sentence received: 18 months probation with no criminal record.

Todd Bertuzzi, March 2004

Sport: Played right wing for the Vancouver Canucks, NHL
Crime: Charged with assault causing bodily harm after sucker-punching Steve Moore during a Vancouver–Colorado game. After driving the unconscious Moore’s head into the ice, the former Avalanche center suffered from three fractured vertebrae in his neck, a grade three concussion, vertebral ligament damage, stretching of the brachial plexus nerves, and facial cuts.
Potential sentence: 10 years in prison.
Sentence received: One year probation, 80 hours of community service, with no criminal record.

And in case you were wondering, Ron Artest was never charged for what happened in the famous brawl at the Detroit vs Indiana game in 2006.

Ron Artest is a criminal?

EDIT: Well, it it looks like we have a lot of readers who are quick to defend these athletes. I wonder, if the athletes had criminal records, if reader would want them removed, or if they have faith in our justice system.

24 Responses to “Can You Catch a Ball? Then You Could be Pardoned for Murder”

  1. Nazim Says:

    Hehe football is clean ;)

  2. David Says:

    Get rid of the stuff that happened in game. Every play in hockey and football is an arrestable offense in normal society.

  3. Sam Says:

    I’m surprised that you added Michael Vick to this list. I would think that he is a case where the opposite is actually true - because he is a celebrity, he was punished more than others would have been.

    What would have happened if it just been 4 “unknown” men operating the dog fighting ring? I highly doubt that they would have gone to jail. Maybe large fines and plenty of community service, but never jailtime.

  4. Micheal Says:

    Kobe bryant’s case was dismissed. But by your logic he should still be in trouble? As for ron artest who cares some dumbass threw a beer at him. Mark Chmura was found innocent after a trial. Why do these people need to be on this site? Way to sensationalize something ass.

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  6. Jay Says:

    Completely false, Artest was charged.

  7. dakota Says:

    This is stupid. Innocent until proven guilty, right? Well, at least 3 of the people on this list were not charged, nor convicted of the allegations.

    Why isn’t Leonard Little on here, the DE for the STL Rams? In 1998, Little crashed into and killed another motorist, Susan Gutweiler in St. Louis, MO. When tested, his blood alcohol level measured 0.19 percent, a level that exceeds the statutory level of intoxication of 0.08 in the state of Missouri. Little received 90 days in jail, four years probation and 1000 hours of community service. Now THAT is a legitimate case and conviction that should be on this website.

  8. Peter Says:

    Whoever made this page is filth. If you want to bring some sort of truth to light and criticize an unjust system make sure you aren’t compromising your own integrity by perpetuating false accusations (Bryant’s case was dismissed, at worst he seems to be nothing more than an adulterer), confusing the issue (Vick’s partners–the ones who weren’t famous athletes–got reduced sentences for testifying against him while no such plea bargain was offered to him, his sentence was much harsher because of his celebrity status), or mixing messages (McSorley and Bertuzzi were wrong but only in crossing a hazy line set by the NHL and its policy of quietly encouraging violence. Artest stepped off the court and committed an assault. The NBA was in no way complicit. The hockey incidents and the basketball incident are completely different and should not be lumped together as such. Tying them together like you have is irresponsible.). This article is a disgusting attempt to incite an emotional response in place of real reasoning. You insult your audience and make an ass of yourself. You might have actually had something here if you had decided to put some thought into it and presented an articulate argument instead of simply slapping together some shamefully flat portraits of complicated issues.

  9. Harold Says:

    The maximum penalties are established with circumstances in mind to warrant them. The typical conviction in no way warrants the full possible penalty. Case in point: A few years ago I was convicted of DUI. I received a penalty of one day in jail, only 1/365th of the maximum penalty. Granted, I came off the bench on my high school basketball team many years prior in a completely different part of the state, so it must have been my athlete status that led to the clemency the judge gave me!

  10. Tyler Says:

    Dany Heatly didn’t even deserve the charges he got. It wasn’t his fault, and they make it sound like he did it on purpose. He even asked to be traded away just to get away from the memory. I feel very bad for him still.

  11. Ted Says:

    Dany Heatley has taken complete responsibility for the accident and has said there isn’t a day that goes by that Dan Snider isn’t on his mind. There are lots of young people who screw up and a wise judge will look at the total situation and the potential of the person involved before he/she makes a decision, not just read the lawbooks like a menu.

  12. Johanna Montana Says:

    “It wasn’t his fault.” Yes, Tyler, it was his fault. Speeding is a crime. He sped and lost control, it was his fault.

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  14. danyheatleyfan Says:

    Dany Heatley is guilty for what he did, but he is owning up to what he did. He knows that he did wrong and that his good friend died as a result of it. Dan Snyder’s family didn’t want Heatley to go to jail. They are at peace with what hapened. They knew that putting Dany in jail wouldn’t bring Dan back. I don’t hate him any more after finding this out. I know people are upset that he got off easy, but you should sit back and think about it. He didn’t get it easy. He has to go through everyday thinking about how his good friend died because he made a bad mistake.

  15. Andrew Says:

    LOL
    that doesn’t even make any sense!

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  17. this site is bogus Says:

    have you never heard of oj simpson?

    also why would you smear someone on here who was found innocent in a court of law.

  18. volley Says:

    What this guy is saying that athletes get away with more than an average citizen because they can higher the best lawyers out there and yet people still look up to them when they are no better than anyone else in the real world they just are really good at that one particular sport and we praise them for it.

  19. Bob Says:

    SOME of these athletes are victims themselves. I’m sure some people see an oppurtunity to make money to try to exploit the truth. I dont know where you get your facts from, but Dany Heatley wasnt speeding. I remember the case, his teammate that died played on our minor league team. We heard all about it. Cops will write a ticket for anything. I pulled into a parking stall and accidently knocked the tail light of the suv to the left of the stall i was parking in. It was an abandoned vehicle with a flat tire. I had parked there numerous times before but since the tire was flat on that corner, i misjudged how much clearance i had and got a ticket for “Improper Turn”. Vick, yes, is an idiot. Kobe, possibly. Heatley, accident. The police said he was not drinking and was not speeding. And the incident with Brett Favre now from like 2 years ago…if it was so wrong and improper, why wasn’t it brought up immediately 2 years ago when it happened. Maybe because it takes 2 to tango, and the one (not making millions) wasn’t happy with how the relationship ended.

  20. Bob Says:

    volley…. politicians do the same thing, but people still look up to them… like ones that werent even born in this country and not even a citizent but still manage to become president and fuck our debt up at a higher rate than anyone else

  21. Bob Says:

    Oh, and I got a “driving too fast for conditions” when i was doing the speed limit and hit patch of oil/rain coming out of an off ramp. Surprised they didnt give me failure to maintain a lane since i went onto the shoulder…

  22. Martin Says:

    Where is Ray Carueth’s article up here, he is right where he belongs, ” in jail ” for the murder of his pregnant girlfriend murdered….. No morality !!!!

  23. Martin Says:

    my bad this is get away with murder, Carueth is behind bars

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