Four UGA football players have been arrested and charged with multiple counts of Theft by Deception, the Athens Banner-Herald has reported.
Arrested last night were safety Tray Matthews, defensive lineman Jonathan Taylor, defensive lineman James DeLoach, and wide receiver Uriah LeMay.
University of Georgia police allege that 11 student tuition checks were drawn from the UGA Athletic Association account and were presented for deposit or cashed twice, according to a UGA police incident report. The players were essentially “double-dipping,” in the words of UGA police chief Jimmy Williamson.
The checks were each in the amount of $71.50 and the total loss is valued at $786.50.
All charges are misdemeanors since they are of less than $500 value.
Uriah LeMay faces four misdemeanor counts of theft by deception, while Tray Matthews faces three counts and Taylor and DeLoach two each. The charges stem from the players depositing the checks using a Wells Fargo mobile app, and then later cashing the checks in person at SunTrust Bank.
Since the victim in the case is the UGA Athletic Association, it had to be reported to authorities due to NCAA compliance issues. The four players could have been deemed to receive an extra benefit.
This morning, UGA head coach Mark Richt offered a brief statement on the issue.
“I’m aware of the situation and it will be handled in an appropriate way,” Richt said.
It’s not currently known what the team punishment will be for the four players, but it could result in a loss of playing time. The Bulldogs are already without safety Josh Harvey-Clemons, who was dismissed from the team last month.