NFC East: Robert Powell

Video: Ryan Moats reacts

March, 30, 2009
3/30/09
11:46
AM ET

Texans running back Ryan Moats tells his side of the incident with officer Robert Powell.

The hits keep on coming for Dallas cop

March, 29, 2009
3/29/09
5:05
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Just when you thought things couldn't get worse for Dallas police officer Robert Powell, former Cowboys linebacker Zach Thomas has come forward with another allegation. Last week, Powell made national news for preventing former Eagles running back Ryan Moats from seeing his dying mother-in-law following a routine traffic stop.

Thomas' wife, Maritza, was arrested by Powell last July and spent three hours in the Dallas County Jail after being pulled over for an illegal U-turn near a popular mall. Thomas described the punishment as "excessive," but said he didn't come forward at that point because he didn't want to "cause a stir."

"This in no way compares to what happened to Ryan Moats and his family," said Zach Thomas, who played for the Cowboys in '08 and is now a free agent. "But we wanted to tell our story, not knowing how many others have been affected by Officer Powell. We know the vast majority of the Dallas police force are good and professional people, but this guy just seems excessive."

Maritza Thomas was issued five tickets at the scene, four of which were later dismissed. Thomas, who was in the process of moving fom South Florida to Dallas, said her mother was with her when the stop took place. And that's where the most damning part of the family's allegation crops up:

"My mom was begging for him to let her go to the apartment that was five minutes away to get the paperwork (proof of insurance)," Maritza Thomas said. "He unbuckled his holster, and she got scared."

Powell's attorney questioned the timing of Thomas' allegation and said there was nothing inappropriate about his client's decision to make an arrest.

"I do understand that an arrest on multiple traffic charges happens often and is absolutely proper under these circumstances," Bob Gorsky said. "Often, when there are multiple charges, an arrest made and bond posted, some of the charges from a single event are later dropped."

I'm not sure whether Powell will keep his job, but it's safe to assume he'll be off the street for a while.

Dallas cop apologizes for traffic stop of Ex-Eagle

March, 27, 2009
3/27/09
7:18
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Unless you've been trapped under a rock the last couple days, you've heard about the disturbing story of a Dallas police officer detaining former Eagles running back Ryan Moats for 13 minutes as he was driving to see his dying mother-in-law. The officer, 25-year-old Robert Powell, initially maintained that he acted appropriately, but he's now had a change of heart. Through his Dallas-based attorneys, he made the following statement:

"I wish to publicly and sincerely apologize to the Moats family, my colleagues in the Dallas Police Department and to all those who have been rightfully angered by my actions on March 18, 2009. After stopping Mr. Moats' vehicle, I showed poor judgment and insensitivity to Mr. Moats and his family by my words and actions. With great remorse I accept my responsibility for adding to their grief in an already difficult time.

"I have attempted to reach Mr. Moats to express my personal condolences directly to his family and my regret about my actions. While these efforts have been unsuccessful so far, I hope we can talk soon.

"Again, I am very sorry for what I did and ask for the forgiveness of all those touched by these unfortunate events."

If you've watched the video, you know those weren't "unfortunate" events, they were horrifying. I'm not sure where I stand on whether Powell should be fired over what happened, but I certainly think he should be taken off the street for a good while.

Sickening story involving ex-Eagle RB Moats

March, 26, 2009
3/26/09
5:51
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Having lived in Dallas the past 13 years, I can remember Ryan Moats as a standout running back at Bishop Lynch High School before starring at Louisiana Tech and getting drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles. Moats, who now plays for the Houston Texans, was involved in a horrifying situation last week that will make your stomach turn.

Every local TV and radio station today is abuzz about what appears to be completely inappropriate behavior on the part of a Dallas police officer who detained Moats and other family members as they tried to race toward a dying relative. Moats' mother-in-law, who was suffering from breast cancer, took a turn for the worse late in the evening of March 17. And as Moats rushed his wife, her father and an aunt to the hospital, he rolled through a red light.

Here's the edited video of what happened next. Upon encountering a family that was obviously in distress, the policeman made the situation even worse. I tend to give cops the benefit of the doubt in a lot of situations because, in most cases, they're putting their lives on the line in order to keep us safe. In this situation, a 25-year-old named Robert Powell not only failed to stand in harm's way, but he caused more.

The fact that the Moats' are black and the cop is white only reinforces a suspicion that many people already have. But no matter what you think, it was a horrible 13 minutes.

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