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Shortstop still faces misdemeanor charges

6/23/2004 - San Diego Padres

PHOENIX -- Maricopa County prosecutors will not pursue a felony charge against a San Diego Padres prospect arrested for allegedly biting a bouncer escorting him out of a tavern.

Bill FitzGerald, a spokesman for the County Attorney's Office, said Wednesday that the case was sent back to the city of Peoria, meaning no felony charges would be filed against Matt Bush but that the shortstop could face misdemeanor counts.

"There wasn't sufficient probable cause to show that a felony
occurred," said Bush's attorney, Darrow Soll. "Matt looks forward
to being a productive member of the Padres organization."

Bush, 18, the first player chosen in baseball's first-year draft
on June 7, was suspended by the Padres after the incident became
public. Team officials weren't immediately available for comment,
but president Dick Freeman said Tuesday that further disciplinary
action was being considered.

Bush, who received a $3.15 million signing bonus, was arrested Sunday at McDuffy's, a bar across the street from the Peoria Sports Complex where the Padres train and sponsor a rookie-level team, on suspicion of aggravated assault, trespass, disorderly conduct and underage drinking.

Employees at McDuffy's said they thought Bush and his
23-year-old brother, Jeremy, slipped into the bar through a rear
entrance. After security officers tried to get them outside, Bush
resisted and a fight began involving the brothers and at least two
bouncers, Peoria police spokesman Jay Davies said.

He said one of the bouncers came out of the fracas with a bite
mark on his left arm.

Jeremy Bush faces also charges of disorderly conduct and
trespassing.