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Bird 'extremely disappointed' after Williams is arrested

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indiana Pacers saw another player land
in legal trouble on Tuesday with the arrest of forward Shawne Williams on marijuana possession and other charges.


Pacers president Larry Bird quickly declared that the team was
"extremely disappointed" by Williams' arrest -- the third time in
less than a year that players have made the police blotter for
their off-court actions.

Williams, the Pacers' first-round draft pick last year from
Memphis, was booked into the Marion County Jail early Tuesday on
initial charges of possession of marijuana, driving without a
license, driving with an expired license plate and failure to
signal a lane change, police said.

Bird was not sympathetic toward Williams.

"Although the legal process needs to be followed, we will not
accept Shawne putting himself in this position, regardless of
innocence or guilt," Bird said in a statement. "This was clearly
a bad and unacceptable decision. We will be meeting with Shawne at
some point to discuss this and pursue any disciplinary action we
can take."

Williams was released Tuesday afternoon and did not speak with
reporters as he left the jail.

Telephone messages were left for Williams' agent, Bill
McCandless, and for James Voyles, a prominent Indianapolis defense
attorney who left the jail with Williams.

An initial hearing for Williams is scheduled for Friday in
Marion Superior Court.

Williams was driving the SUV, which was carrying two other men,
when it was pulled over for changing lanes without signaling about
12:45 a.m., said Sgt. Matthew Mount, a city police spokesman.

When Williams rolled down the driver's side window, the officer
detected a strong odor of marijuana, Mount said. Another officer
later found a smoldering cigar-sized marijuana cigarette in the
vehicle's ash tray, he said.

Both Williams and the front seat passenger, Roosevelt Rollins,
of Memphis, Tenn., were arrested on marijuana possession charges.

"The guy in the front passenger seat, Mr. Rollins, said the
marijuana was his and Mr. Williams denied knowledge of the
marijuana even being in his car even though you could obviously
smell the odor of burnt marijuana," Mount said.

Mount said Williams had no driver's license and instead handed
the officer a Tennessee identification card. He said the SUV's
license plate had expired in July.

The SUV's back seat passenger was arrested on charges of
carrying a gun without a license and theft, as the 9 mm handgun had
been reported stolen in Collierville, Tenn., according to a police
report.

The 6-foot-9 Williams averaged 3.9 points and 1.8 rebounds in 46
games last season as a rookie for the Pacers.

The recent run of legal troubles for the Pacers started last
Oct. 6 when Stephen Jackson and some teammates got into a fight
with others at an Indianapolis strip club while out for the night
during training camp.

Jackson, whom the Pacers traded to the Golden State Warriors in
January, pleaded guilty in June to a felony charge for firing a gun
into the air and was ordered to pay a $5,000 fine and perform 100
hours of community service. He also has been suspended by the NBA
for the first seven games of next season.

Pacers players Jamaal Tinsley and Marquis Daniels face pending
charges stemming from a fight at an Indianapolis nightclub in
February. Tinsley faces the most serious charge -- a felony count of
intimidation.