Twelve current or former members of the Tennessee football team were among 25 arrested or cited by authorities who broke up a party at an off-campus apartment complex on Sunday morning.
Tennessee football players A.J. Johnson and Danny O’Brien were among seven people arrested; 18 other people were cited for various offenses by Knox County Sheriff’s Office deputies at the Quarry Trail apartment complex.
Former players Dontavis Sapp and Isaac Mobley also were arrested, according to authorities.
Johnson and Sapp, who allegedly hosted the party, were charged with providing alcohol to minors and resisting arrest. Both Johnson and Sapp are 22.
O’Brien, 20, was charged with underage consumption of alcohol, resisting arrest and false impersonation. Authorities said he provided fake identification. Mobley, also 20, was charged with underage alcohol consumption.
All four were released on bond Sunday.
Current players Curtis Maggitt, Jakob Johnson and Jalen Reeves-Maybin, residents of the apartment where the party was held, were issued citations for providing alcohol to minors, according to an incident report.
Current football players Dontavius Blair, Dimarya Mixon, Justin Coleman and Malik Brown — along with former player Daniel Sola — were among 15 people who were issued citations for alleged underage drinking.
A.J. Johnson and Sapp provided “numerous individuals” with alcohol and marijuana at the party, according to arrest warrants. The accompanying incident report notes, “Officers observed marijuana residue in a pipe commonly used to smoke marijuana, along with residue and clippings on a table in one of the bedrooms. The pipe was destroyed by the residents of the apartment as the ownership of the apparent drug paraphernalia could not be determined.”
Neither Johnson nor Sapp was charged with a drug offense.
Residents at the apartment complex told the News Sentinel that at least a dozen Sheriff’s Office cars arrived outside Johnson’s and Sapp’s building just after midnight and appeared to arrest several people.
“The entire parking lot was filled with police cars,” said Gregg Betts, a UT senior who had a view of the scene from his third-floor balcony.
The Sheriff’s Office said deputies first responded to Quarry Trail at 12:02 a.m. in response to a noise complaint. They found a large party of “80-90 people,” including some who appeared under 21.
Sapp assured officers that he would quiet the party, according to the report, but the music was reportedly cranked back up as law enforcement officers were departing. The officers returned to warn those at the party of “the consequences of failing to be quiet.”
Officers returned at 12:37 a.m. in response to a fight in front of the same building in the apartment complex, according to the report.
Officers approached O’Brien, who provided a false identification, according to warrants. The report also said O’Brien “had a very strong odor of alcohol on his breath and became combative” as he was being arrested, but was “subsequently taken into custody after a brief struggle.”
The arrest warrant for Johnson said that he was charged with resisting arrest because he “began pulling away from officers and attempted to leave the scene” when deputies tried to secure him.
None of the current or former players has an arrest record in Knox County, according to records.
Quarry Trail is a student-oriented apartment complex off Cherokee Trail just across Fort Loudoun Lake from UT.
Several residents told the News Sentinel that they didn’t notice any more noise than a typical Saturday night at the apartment complex. At least two residents said they must have slept through the commotion.
Details of the fight that brought deputies to the apartment a second time were unclear, although neighbor Nawaf Alhomoud said there was a “big fight” between two people.
“I went outside the apartment and there were about 25 police cars,” he said.
Betts said one of the combatants appeared to be “bloodied up.”
Betts and his roommates, fellow UT seniors Ben Young and Scott Jewett, said it appeared authorities were searching for one of the combatants in the fight. They said at least one K-9 was on the scene, although they weren’t sure if the dog was there to search for drugs or a suspect, or being used for crowd control.
At least three others were arrested at the same party, according to arrest records. Kadarrius Dorney, 20, and Alphonso Hardin Simmons, 21, both of Knoxville, were charged with underage consumption and resisting arrest. Jayden Ashlee Barrett, 22, was charged with resisting arrest. Barrett is a former Lady Vols softball player.
Neither Dorney nor Simmons are listed as current UT students in the school’s directory.
UT issued a statement Sunday morning saying it was aware of the arrests and was gathering details.
“We have very high standards and expectations within our football program at the University of Tennessee, and appropriate action will be taken,” said the statement from coach Butch Jones.
A.J. Johnson is a linebacker who opted to return to UT for his senior season rather than pursue an NFL career. He has back-to-back seasons with more than 100 tackles and was an All-SEC selection in 2013.
O’Brien is a sophomore defensive tackle from Michigan who played in all 12 games as a reserve last season. Mobley, who has the same address as O’Brien, was a walk-on lineman for the Vols in 2012.
Sapp started all 12 games as a senior in 2013 and was frequently praised by Jones for his leadership and work ethic.
The arrests are believed to be the first of Jones’ tenure as head coach. The last arrest of a UT player was in 2012.
News Sentinel staff writer Hayes Hickman contributed to this report.
Evan Woodbery covers Tennessee football. Follow him at Twitter.com/TennesseeBeat.
Note: Lead was updated to reflect total number of arrests and citations.