Pro Bowl Time for Ray Lewis comes 10 years after his arrest for murder

Cheryl Phillips's picture

It's Pro Bowl game day Sunday, the same day ten years ago that Pro Bowl linebacker Ray Lewis was charged with murder. Lewis was charged in the deaths of two people outside an Atlanta nightclub hours after a Super Bowl XXXIV party. Despite this serious mark during his successful career, Lewis has been selected to eleven Pro Bowls, including the one he will play in Sunday, January 31, 2010. The game starts at 7:30 pm ET on ESPN.

Baltimore Ravens linebacker, Ray Lewis, was also the second linebacker to win the Super Bowl Most Valuable Player Award and the first linebacker to win the award on the winning Super Bowl team.

The murder charges against Ray Lewis in 2000 happened after a Super Bowl XXXIV party in Atlanta on January 31, 2000. Allegedly there was a fight after the party that Lewis was involved in that resulted in the stabbing deaths of Jacinth Baker and Richard Lollar.

Lewis, as well as his two friends, Reginald Oakley and Joseph Sweeting, were indicted on murder and aggravated assault charges.

Most of the testimony at the trial was either inconclusive. The defense contended that Lewis acted as a peacemaker in the fight. Both of Lewis' friends were acquitted and Lewis pleaded to a lesser charge of obstruction of justice. Lewis was sentenced to one year of probation and was fined US$250,000 by the NFL, a league record at the time of the sentencing.

Lewis was chosen to play in the Pro Bowl on Sunday, January 31, 2010. This is the 11th time he has been selected to play in a Pro Bowl, the most of any player in this year's game.

"I love it too much," Lewis said. "It's one of the greatest accomplishments you can have outside of the Super Bowl. Whether it's your first time or your 11th time, it's the same reward. You understand these times will never be again."

Ray Lewis will play defense in Sunday's Pro Bowl. For the first time since 1980, the Pro Bowl will be played somewhere other than Honolulu. The annual game will take start at 7:30 pm, Sunday, January 31, 2010 at Sun Life Stadium in Miami.

Written by Cheryl Phillips

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