Trevor Bates, who last month was arrested on charges of punching a New York City police officer after he was taken to a precinct house for failing to pay a taxi fare, has been released by the NFL’s Detroit Lions, according to The Associated Press.
The Westbrook native, a former defensive end at the University of Maine, pleaded not guilty to charges of assault, resisting arrest, theft of services and obstruction of governmental administration when he was arraigned last month from a psychiatric ward via a video hookup.
The 25-year-old Bates played in nine games for the Lions last season, mostly on special teams, and was involved in three tackles.
He was arrested early morning Jan. 26 at a hotel near LaGuardia Airport after allegedly refusing to pay a $32 cab fare for a ride from Manhattan.
The police were going to release him with an appearance ticket if he didn’t have any outstanding warrants, but Bates refused to be fingerprinted and punched Sgt. James O’Brien in the face. O’Brien, who was trying to calm Bates down, suffered a concussion and had to have three stitches over his left eye, according to police.
Bates was subdued with a stun gun and taken to a psychiatric hospital for evaluation.
In a release issued in February, Bates’ agent, Jeff Jankovich, said his client’s actions “are in no way a reflection of who he is as a person” and “not at all consistent with the man and friend we knows him to be.
“At this time, our priority is to ensure that Trevor receives the help he needs,” Jankovich said.
The 6-foot-2, 247-pound Bates earned $356,188 with the Lions last season.
Bates was a seventh-round draft choice of the Indianapolis Colts and played in one regular-season game for them in 2016.
He moved on to the New England Patriots where he was a practice squad player during their 2016-17 Super Bowl championship season.
Bates also was a practice player with the New York Giants before signing with the Lions, whose head coach is former Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia.
During his 46-game UMaine career, Bates was involved in 207 tackles, including 35 tackles for a loss (19 sacks). He forced five fumbles, made three interceptions and recovered two fumbles. He also returned an interception and a fumble for touchdowns.
He was an All-Colonial Athletic Association first-team selection as a senior in 2015 when he registered had 57 tackles with 14 1/2 TFLs and 7 1/2 sacks.