Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis is facing charges of “robbery, terroristic threats, conspiracy and aggravated assault” after being involved in an altercation on Pittsburgh’s South Side early Sunday morning, Pittsburgh police said in a statement Thursday evening.
An arrest warrant is expected to be issued in the coming days, Revis’ lawyer, Blaine Jones, told Newsday.
According to police, officers were dispatched after a report that two men were knocked unconscious at the intersection of South 23rd and East Carson streets at approximately 2:43 a.m.
According to the investigation, a 22-year-old man from Kittanning was walking on East Carson Street when he saw a man who he thought looked like Revis. When asked, Revis confirmed his identity. The man began recording the interaction on his cellphone and continued to follow Revis, police say.
Revis allegedly took the cellphone away from the man and tried to delete footage from the device. Another man, identified by police as a 21-year-old from Ross Township, tried to help retrieve the cellphone before Revis threw it in the street.
According to the police report: “A verbal argument followed. A male came to assist Revis.”
The 22-year-old and 21-year-old said they were punched, according to police, but it’s unclear who threw the punches. According to the statement, witnesses told police that the two were “unconscious for about 10 minutes.”
Police also stated they were able to retrieve the video and confirmed that the person involved was Revis.
Jones told Newsday by phone that his client was not the aggressor and that he reached out to police “several times” so Revis could tell his side of the story, “but we were never afforded that opportunity.”
Jones told local television station KDKA earlier in the day that Revis was assaulted by a group of five people while he was in town visiting friends and family.
During his phone interview with Newsday, Jones defended Revis’ reputation, saying: “Life is all about credibility, and Darrelle Revis has been in the national spotlight since he was a teenager and not one single time has he ever been arrested, or anything like that — charged, arrested, nothing. These gentlemen, one in particular, were the aggressors that evening.
“He initiated the physical contact against Darrelle, Darrelle did everything in his power to squash the situation. Darrelle went as far as retreating. He walked away. These guys pursued after Darrelle. When is he allowed to defend himself?”
Revis — a hometown hero in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, about 25 miles northwest of Pittsburgh, and a former star at the University of Pittsburgh — sought medical attention after the incident, Jones said, but he declined to give specifics about his injuries.
Jones also chose not to disclose Revis’ whereabouts. “Even tually an arrest warrant is going to be issued and I want to make sure Darrelle is safe out there when it is issued,” Jones said.
“They already told you some of the charges, they already told you some of the facts. Unfortunately, we didn’t get a chance to say Darrelle’s side of the story. But I do anticipate that happening . . . When the time comes, we’ll be prepared.”
The Jets issued a brief statement through a team spokesman, saying: “We are aware of the incident and have spoken to Darrelle.”
Revis’ future with the franchise was uncertain even before Sunday’s incident. He signed a five-year, $70-million deal ($39 million guaranteed) in March 2015 to return to the Jets, who had selected him 14th overall in the 2007 NFL Draft. But his diminished play in 2016 (one interception, no passes defensed) was a hot-button topic throughout the Jets’ 5-11 season.
The Jets must make a decision on Revis’ contract by March 10, the second day of the new league year. On that day, Revis, 31, is due a $2-million roster bonus. Although he’s due a $13-million salary in 2017, only $6 million is guaranteed, meaning the Jets’ front office has some salary-cap flexibility.