By Aubrey Bloom
Texas A&M football players Darian Claiborne and Isaiah Golden were charged with aggravated robbery on Tuesday, the same day they were released from the team.
Head coach Kevin Sumlin made the dismissal public in a statement released to the media this afternoon. Texas A&M Sports Information Director Alan Cannon said no additional information will be available on the timing of the dismissals.
The Aggies each were charged with three counts of aggravated robbery in connection with an incident reported just before 11 p.m. May 23. If convicted, the crime is punishable by between five years and life in prison.
That’s when College Station police said three men reported being robbed, including one who said he was struck in the face with a handgun, at an apartment in the 1100 block of Jones Butler Road. According to court documents, the trio eventually acknowledged that they had planned to buy marijuana from the suspects when one of them pointed a gun and the other took the money before fleeing on foot.
The complainants also were arrested on drug charges after officers said they found marijuana and other controlled substances in the home while investigating the robbery, according to the arrest report.
Investigators do not believe the duo were involved in a rash of aggravated robberies reported in College Station since Memorial Day, Lt. Chuck Fleeger said.
Warrants were executed for the pair Tuesday. Claiborne was arrested at South College Avenue and Waverly Drive in Bryan following a traffic stop Tuesday afternoon, and officers took Golden into custody at Texas A&M soon after. They were being held Tuesday evening on $120,000 bail.
Claiborne, a linebacker from Louisiana, was suspended for the Chick-fil-A Bowl following a Dec. 22 arrest on charges of possession of a dangerous drug and possession of less than two ounces of marijuana.
On Feb. 23, Claiborne and Golden, a defensive tackle from Carthage, Texas, were both arrested. According to the probable cause statement, the two were together in a vehicle parked at Reveille Ranch Apartments on Wellborn Road. Golden was arrested for possession of less than two ounces of marijuana. Claiborne received a noise violation, a Class C misdemeanor.
Both were suspended from spring football.
“These two individuals have failed to meet the high expectations and standards that we have for our football players and as representatives of this university,” Sumlin said at the time. “These two players have exhibited a pattern of behavior that we will not tolerate at Texas A&M.”
On March 20, Golden withdrew from Texas A&M, but had planned to enroll in summer school and rejoin the team, said Sumlin and defensive coordinator Mark Snyder.
Claiborne was the leading tackle for the Aggies in 2013, and was selected to the Southeastern Conference All-Freshman Team. Golden played in 11 games last season, starting in six.
Claiborne and Golden are among several Texas A&M players who have been arrested since the season ended.
On April 10, senior defensive end Gavin Stansbury was arrested along with junior receiver Edward Pope and senior safety Howard Matthews. Pope was driving the vehicle when he was pulled over for having an expired registration. He was then arrested on a municipal warrant. To avoid having his car towed, Pope asked to release the vehicle to Stansbury or Matthews. A driver’s license check on Stansbury revealed a Harris County warrant for a misdemeanor assault. Stansbury was released from jail after posting $500 bail. Matthews was also arrested on a municipal warrant after a license check.
Stansbury was initially suspended, but was then reinstated to the team. Matthews and Pope were not suspended.
The week prior, sophomore reciever Ricky Seals-Jones was arrested for disorderly conduct. His attorney said Seals-Jones was reacting to a racial slur and will fight the charge. There was no disciplinary action from the team.
Sophomore quarterback Kenny Hill was arrested for public intoxication outside of a Northgate bar on March 28. Hill was suspended from the team, but has since been reinstated.
* Andrea Salazar contributed to this report.