Texas DA drops charges against Taylor

Updated: December 1, 2009, 11:14 PM ET
By John Barr | ESPN.com

BEAUMONT, Texas -- Prosecutors in Beaumont, Texas, have dismissed a state jail theft charge against Crista Taylor, the ex-fiancée of Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki.

Taylor, who was arrested in Nowitzki's home in May during the Mavericks' second-round playoff series, was scheduled to stand trial in Jefferson County, Texas, Wednesday, but prosecutors determined the cost to taxpayers would be an unnecessary burden.

"We talked with the victim in this case, and he agreed that the cost to taxpayers to transport this woman back from Missouri, try her case for two or three days, and then have to deliver her back to Missouri was excessive," said Jefferson County Criminal District Attorney Tom Maness.

Taylor is already serving a five-year prison term in Missouri for two felony charges and would have to be returned to finish out those sentences after any proceedings in Texas, Maness said. The maximum penalty for the charge pending in Jefferson County was two years, and Taylor would have served the majority of that time while in custody in Missouri, according to a press release from the Jefferson County District Attorney's Office.

Taylor's legal troubles in Texas began when she charged more than $6,000 to a fraudulently-obtained credit card, according to Jefferson County Assistant District Attorney Ramon Rodriguez. A portion of those charges was used to pay for cosmetic dentistry, Rodriguez said.

Just days after Taylor's arrest, she told the Dallas Morning News that she was carrying Nowitzki's child, a claim that later proved to be unfounded. Taylor, it was revealed in September, was not pregnant. The revelation came when Nowitzki's Dallas-based attorney, Robert Hart, secured a court-ordered pregnancy test.

In July, ESPN learned the FBI was investigating Taylor for making threatening phone calls to Hart from a Beaumont jail.

Taylor ultimately waived extradition and was transported to Missouri, where she's now serving a five-year prison sentence for violating terms of her probation in Missouri from a decade-old forgery and felony theft case.

When interviewed in October by ESPN.com's Marc Stein, Nowitzki was asked about Taylor's prison sentence. "It is what it is," Nowitzki told Stein. "Those are things she did way before I ever knew her. ... For me, it's over. I'm ready to move on."

Scott Renick, Taylor's attorney, said he found out late Tuesday afternoon that the charges against Taylor would be dismissed.

"I think this is an equitable result for all parties," Renick said.

John Barr is a reporter in ESPN's Enterprise Unit. He can be reached at jbarr-espn@hotmail.com. Information from NBA senior writer Marc Stein was included in this report.

John Barr | email

Reporter ESPN Enterprise Unit

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