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Spellman arrested after chase with police

1/29/2008 - NFL

TULSA, Okla. -- Former NFL player Alonzo Spellman was
arrested Tuesday after Tulsa police fired pepper-spray pellets into
his car following a nearly 20-minute chase.


Spellman was booked into the Tulsa County Jail on complaints of
eluding, assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer,
resisting arrest and driving without a license, jail records show.
His bond was set at $10,700 and Spellman remained jailed early
Tuesday evening.


The chase began at 12:23 p.m. after officers responded to a
disturbance at a convenience store in midtown Tulsa, police
spokesman Leland Ashley said. When officers arrived, Spellman got
into a green Chrysler Pacifica and drove away, Ashley said.


"He took us on a little pursuit through the city," Ashley
said. "We had to use stop sticks that took out three of his
tires."


After the vehicle stopped, the 36-year-old Spellman refused to
get out of the car for about 20 minutes until officers fired
"pepper bullets" through the windows.


Ashley said he's unaware of Spellman's ties to the Tulsa
community or whether he has an attorney.


The 6-foot-4, 300-pound Spellman was a first-round draft choice
out of Ohio State for the Chicago Bears in 1992. He played nine
seasons in the NFL for the Bears, Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys,
recording 43 sacks in 123 games and leading the Bears with eight
sacks during the 1996 season.


Spellman has a history of treatment for mental illness and was
hospitalized for psychiatric evaluation after his involvement in a
standoff with police at the home of his publicist in 1998.


He was sentenced to 18 months in prison after pleading guilty in
2003 to interfering with the crew of a Delta Air Lines flight from
Cincinnati to Philadelphia.


Prosecutors said Spellman cursed and shouted for the duration of
the July 23, 2002, flight, made crude comments to female
passengers, threatened to open a cabin door and threatened the
pilot.


Spellman was ordered to spend three months in a rehabilitation
center upon his release and to undergo psychological counseling.


In October 2005, Spellman agreed to a contract with the Las
Vegas Gladiators of the Arena Football League.