Fletcher gets six months probation

Updated: March 13, 2009, 4:57 PM ET
Associated Press

HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- Southern Miss running back Damion Fletcher, a former Conference USA offensive player of the year, was sentenced to six months probation after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor gun charge.

Fletcher pleaded guilty Thursday to firing a handgun within city limits, said Hattiesburg city prosecutor Sally O'Flynn. If he completes probation and 40 hours of community service, his record can be wiped clean.

A call to Fletcher's defense attorney was not immediately returned.

Fletcher, who holds the school record for career rushing yards, was arrested Feb. 15 after firing a handgun outside the apartments where many athletes live. He initially pleaded not guilty.

Coach Larry Fedora said Fletcher's is not participating in spring practice.

"Damion is paying for the mistake he made and we are handling the discipline internally," Fedora said.

Fletcher will have to report to a probation officer, O'Flynn said. If he gets in trouble while on probation, he could face more disciplinary action, including jail time.

Fletcher has smashed most Southern Miss rushing records and now has 4,287 rushing yards in his career.

A spokesman said Fletcher would not be made available for interviews.


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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