Ex-NFL player Damon Arnette pleads not guilty in 2022 Vegas Strip hotel valet gun case
LAS VEGAS, Nev. (AP) - Former NFL cornerback Damon Arnette has pleaded not guilty in Nevada to felony charges and his lawyer is challenging his indictment alleging he displayed a handgun during an argument with Las Vegas Strip casino valets in January 2022.
“He never brandished a gun. He never pointed a gun,” defense attorney Ross Goodman said Thursday of Arnette.
The former player appeared in court Wednesday and remains free pending trial in October on assault with a deadly weapon and carrying a concealed firearm charges.
Prosecutor Jory Scarborough declined to comment.
Arnette, 26, a first-round draft pick of the Las Vegas Raiders in 2020, played college football at Ohio State and lives in Boynton Beach, Florida.
He is accused of holding a .45-caliber handgun and threatening two hotel valets during an argument about a receipt for parking his Mercedes SUV at the Park MGM hotel.
Las Vegas police who stopped and arrested Arnette and a passenger in the vehicle a short distance away reported finding a gun in the driver’s side door. The passenger also had a handgun, police reported. Charges against that man were dropped last year.
Arnette could face up to 10 years in Nevada state prison if he is convicted of both charges.
Clark County District Court Judge Ron Israel scheduled a hearing June 7 on Goodman’s written challenge late Tuesday of the indictment filed May 12.
Arnette played a total of 13 games for the Raiders before he was dropped by the team in November 2021 after social media video appeared to show him threatening someone’s life while brandishing multiple guns. He was not charged with a crime at that time.
His arrest two months later on suspicion of weapons and drug offenses after the incident at the Park MGM prompted the Kansas City Chiefs to release him from a reserve contract that he had signed days earlier.
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