Marshall players facing drug charges

Updated: May 6, 2009, 12:22 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

BARBOURSVILLE, W.Va. -- Two Marshall University football players have been suspended after being arrested on drug charges in western West Virginia.

Tailback Darius Marshall and defensive back DeQuan Bembry, also known as DeQuan Starling, were arrested early Saturday in Cabell County. Initially they were charged with possession with intent to deliver, and an officer at Western Regional Jail said they both were being held there on $20,000 bond.

Marshall coach Mark Snyder issued a statement on Tuesday saying that the charges were incorrect.

"Cabell County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Doug Ferguson announced in a Tuesday news conference that a detective's mistake led to improper charges being filed against Marshall University football players Darius Marshall and DeQuan Bembry last Saturday and that the felony charges will be formally dismissed at a preliminary hearing set for May 11. Fegurson said both will be charged with misdemeanor possession for possessing less than 15 grams of marijuana," the statement read.

"My client is very pleased at this time that the facts are coming to light," said attorney David D. Perry who is representing Darius Marshall. "We're not advocating a criminal act, but we do think a proper application of the facts to the law is appropriate."

Court documents released Monday confirmed marijuana was the drug linked to the charges, which are felonies in West Virginia.

The officer did not know if the players had an attorney.

Last season as a sophomore, Marshall ran for 1,177 yards and scored five touchdowns. Bembry had 80 tackles, including 7.5 for loss, and intercepted a pass as a redshirt freshman.

In his statement, Snyder said: "First of all, let me reiterate how disappointed I am in DeQuan and Darius for their poor decision and in no way do I condone their actions. This is a matter we take very seriously and we will continue to allow the legal process to take its course."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.