Vikings release Caleb King
MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota Vikings running back Caleb King was released from jail with no charges filed against him on Tuesday, three days after being arrested in an alleged beating outside a birthday party last weekend.
That didn't stop the Vikings from cutting ties with the former University of Georgia standout.
The Vikings cut King just hours after he was released from jail. The team did not comment on the decision, instead announcing it in a one-sentence press release.
King's case remained under investigation, Anoka County prosecutors' spokesman David Cossi said.
Anoka County Sheriff's Cmdr. Paul Sommer said on Saturday that a 22-year-old man suffered "a very serious brain injury," a fractured skull and cuts on his face that required more than 50 stitches to close in an alleged altercation that started after the man allegedly teased the 24-year-old King about his resemblance to an unspecified celebrity.
Authorities said King denied assaulting the man and told detectives the man fell to the ground when King was talking to him.
King signed with the Vikings as a rookie free agent last year after going undrafted in the supplemental draft. He spent most of the season on the practice squad, was bumped up to the active roster late in the year, but didn't play in a game.
It's the latest off-the-field issue for King, a highly touted recruit at Georgia who ran into several problems during his college career. He was arrested for failing to appear for a court date on a speeding ticket and declared academically ineligible in his final year at Georgia and went undrafted in the supplemental draft before signing with the Vikings.
The decision to cut King stands in contrast to how the Vikings handled cornerback Chris Cook's legal issues. Cook, a highly regarded player and former second-round draft pick, was charged with one count of domestic assault and one count of third-degree assault, both felonies, after a fight with his girlfriend last year.
Cook was initially suspended from the team, but later returned to the active roster but did not practice or play with the team. He was paid for almost all of last season while the legal process played out. Cook was acquitted of both counts in March and was not disciplined further by the Vikings or the NFL.
"We take each situation as it comes in and evaluate it and make decisions of where we feel that player is," GM Rick Spielman said on Saturday. "And if it's a risk or something that we don't want to deal with, then we'll deal with it.
"But we're not the only NFL team that has its situations. We try to prevent those because it's very important to what we're trying to build here, and you just have to deal with them when they come and make decisions based off that."
Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press
2012 NFL DRAFT