Based on the details of Jonathan Taylor‘s domestic violence arrest — his second in eight months, no less — there’s seemingly no way he can move forward as a member of the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Saturday evening, the alleged victim, a 24-year-old female, told Tuscaloosa police officers responding to a call near the UA campus that she had been assaulted by Taylor, her boyfriend. The incident report described the woman as having minor injuries around her neck; the officers also observed a bedroom closet door in the alleged victim’s residence with a hole punched through it.
ESPN.com writes that “officers located the suspect at the victim’s residence and spoke to him about the incident” and “found probable cause to arrest the suspect.” The defensive tackle was charged with domestic violence/assault and domestic violence/criminal mischief.
Taylor had been dismissed from Georgia last July following the initial domestic violence incident. In that case, which is still pending, the 6-4, 335-pound Taylor is accused of choking his then-girlfriend — a different female from the most recent incident — and striking her in the face with an open fist. Taylor has now been arrested three times in a little over a year, the other being theft by deception charges last March while he was still at UGA.
The decision by Nick Saban and UA to sign Taylor this past January was controversial; this latest incident has stirred up the local media natives yet again. From al.com‘s Kevin Scarbinsky:
Saban has been especially passionate on the subject of second chances, and his heart may be in the right place, but too many Alabama football players manage to be good students and good citizens as well as good athletes to have their program’s reputation put at risk.
Taylor looked like a risk from the start. Now he looks like one of Saban’s and Alabama’s biggest mistakes.
In response to the situation, the university released a very brief statement early Sunday morning that’s scant on details as to Taylor’s future with the university in general and the football program specifically: “UA is aware of the incident. The student has been referred to judicial affairs.”
It would be very surprising if another statement wasn’t released at some point in the very near future, perhaps as early as today, in which Second-Chance Saban announces that Taylor is no longer a part of his football program. At least, based on the current evidence and Taylor’s prior track record, that’s what should happen, and the sooner the better for the sake of a head coach’s and university’s image that has already taken a hit because of the player’s actions — and because of the way his signing was so staunchly defended at the time.
“We recruited this young man out of high school, and we felt that from what we knew about him, what his high school coach said, what the people at the school that he was at said about him, and where he came from in junior college, that he was the kind of guy that deserved a second chance,” Saban said on National Signing Day this past February. “But with that chance, we also have stipulations of things that he needs to do from a personal development standpoint so that he won’t make any kind of mistake like this ever again.
“That’s an ongoing process with him, and that’s something that we continue to monitor, and he has done a very good job with.”
“All of us in the University community have a role in helping student-athletes reach their potential – in competition, in the classroom and in life,” UA athletic director Bill Battle said in a statement at the time of the January signing. “It’s important to note that the young man will become a part of our program after going through an extensive process conducted by the University.
“As one of our state’s most high-profile entities, we are acutely aware of our responsibility to the University, our student-athletes, our community and our state.”