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Wednesday, May 22, 2024
NEWS  |  CAMPUS

Despite dropped charges, Joiner loses captain status on football team

Charges against UF senior football player Earl A. "Tony" Joiner were dropped Friday morning, ending weeklong speculation on Joiner's participation in Saturday's football game.

State Attorney's Office spokesman Spencer Mann said the office reviewed the Gainesville Police Department case report, contacted the victim and filed a no-info, meaning the charge is dropped and the case is closed, Friday morning.

UF head coach Urban Meyer initially did not say whether the starting safety would play in the game against LSU. The university's sports information department commented on the situation through a press release.

Meyer said in the press release that Joiner's actions did not demonstrate leadership qualities.

Joiner did not start against LSU; freshman Major Wright started in his place. Still, Joiner did play in Saturday's game.

Joiner was arrested early Tuesday morning for attempting to retrieve his girlfriend's car from Watson's Towing, where it was being held for ,76.

Mann said Stan Forron, the property owner of the lot, is adamant that he suffered no loss or damage and therefore the State Attorney's Office cannot sustain a criminal charge.

Mann said he feels GPD responded in an appropriate manner to the incident.

While Mann had indicated his office would not expedite Joiner's case, he said he was forced to change speed because he had sports media contacting him every day and it was distracting from other cases.

He said some people were calling him three or four times a day.

"It was taking time away from a murder trial," he said. "We had to change our time frame because it was impacting business with far greater consequences."

Mann wasn't the only one to receive calls about Joiner's case.

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Florida Today reported that Forron received more than 200 calls from Gators fans about Joiner, including more than a dozen death threats.

Forron said Mann got in touch with him Thursday about the charges.

"I told him there was no reason for the charges to be there," Forron said.

Whether Joiner got to play in Saturday's game was the coach's call, he said.

"That has nothing to do with it," Forron said. "The towing company got paid. Him playing or not has nothing to do with the charges being dropped. I wish the young man all the luck in the world, but that wasn't what this was about."

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