Strawberry charged with filing false report

Updated: September 29, 2005, 6:10 PM ET
Associated Press

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. -- Former baseball star Darryl Strawberry was charged with filing a false police report after making up a story alleging that his SUV had been stolen, Delray Beach police said.

Strawberry reported his rented Nissan Murano stolen on Sept. 17, saying it disappeared from outside a gas station while he was inside buying cigarettes.

But investigators who watched a gas station surveillance video saw him drive off in a different car than the one he reported stolen, police spokesman Jeff Messer said.

An anonymous caller later told police that Strawberry's SUV was behind a sports bar in Lake Worth, about 15 miles away. Police found the SUV there with no damage and with Strawberry's wallet inside, Messer said.

Strawberry, 43, admitted to police on Wednesday that he lied in the original report. He was not arrested, however, because the charge, filing a false police report, is a misdemeanor.

Strawberry had apparently allowed someone to borrow the car but he did not provide details to police on what may have happened, Messer said.

The eight-time All-Star and member of two World Series winners has had legal trouble before. Strawberry served 11 months in prison in 2002 and 2003 for violating probation on cocaine possession charges.

Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press