Clarett waives preliminary hearing in robbery case

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Former Ohio State star Maurice Clarett on Wednesday waived his right to a preliminary hearing as prosecutors prepared to ask a grand jury to charge him with using a gun to rob two people.

The hearing had been set for Thursday in Franklin County Municipal Court.

Prosecutors expect to present evidence to the grand jury in the next week to 10 days, Franklin County prosecutor Ron O'Brien said.

According to a police report, Clarett flashed a gun and demanded property from a man and a woman behind a downtown Columbus bar on Jan. 1. He got into a sport utility vehicle with two men after he was identified by the bar owner, who happened to come out into the alley.

No one was injured, and only a cell phone was taken from the alleged victims, police said.

Clarett, 22, was wanted by police on two aggravated robbery charges for almost two days before he turned himself in around 9 p.m. on Jan. 2. He posted a $50,000 bond and was released from jail the next day.

Clarett helped Ohio State win the 2002 national championship but sat out the 2003 season after he was charged with misdemeanor falsification for filing a police report claiming that more than $10,000 in clothing, CDs, cash and stereo equipment was stolen from a car he borrowed from a local dealership. He later pleaded guilty to a lesser charge.

Clarett was suspended from the team for misleading police and for receiving special benefits worth thousands of dollars from a family friend. He dropped out of Ohio State and then lost a legal challenge to the NFL's requirement that players wait three years after high school before turning pro.

He was taken in the third round by the Denver Broncos in last year's draft, but the team cut him in August.