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paulitik

For those calling to sign Odell a few months ago...

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Police seek former Bengals linebacker Thurman

Story Highlights

* Thurman was indicted last week by an Erie County grand jury

* He is accused of punching a 19-year-old North Royalton man

* Thurman was suspended indefinitely by the NFL in June

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SANDUSKY, Ohio (AP) -- Northern Ohio authorities were seeking former Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Odell Thurman on Friday on a felonious assault warrant.

The 25-year-old Thurman, of Cincinnati, was indicted last week by an Erie County grand jury on the charge, accusing him of punching a 19-year-old North Royalton man, the Erie County Sheriff's Department said in a statement.

Police said Thurman punched the man in the face, breaking his jaw, on May 27 at Kalahari Waterpark Resort in Sandusky after they argued about a place in line.

Thurman's agent Safarrah Lawson said he had been unable to speak to his client and could not comment on the charges. A message seeking comment was left late Friday with Thurman's lawyer, John Michels.

Thurman was suspended indefinitely by the NFL in June after violating the league's substance abuse policy.

Thurman sat out the last two seasons after skipping a drug test and getting arrested for drunken driving. He had been reinstated by the league in April, but the Bengals released him in May after he skipped a series of voluntary workouts.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/foot...n.ap/index.html

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A longtime friend, however, contends that this is a case of mistaken identity.

"He wasn't within three states of Ohio then," said Evern Williams, who coached Thurman in middle school and counseled him through high school and college, and continues to have regular contact with him. According to Williams, acquaintances of Thurman's were at the park, but Thurman was still in Georgia.

"It's just an example of what happens when you have the kind of reputation [Thurman] has," Williams said. "It's what happens when people associated with him were there and it's assumed he was, too."

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Crazy, the dude's reputation is committing felonies out of state, what a #####. You can take the player out of the Bengals, but you can't take the Bengal out of the player.

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