Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Dwayne Bowe was booked on municipal charges of speeding and possession of a controlled substance on Sunday.
RIVERSIDE, MO (KCTV) -
Chiefs wide receiver Dwayne Bowe admitted to smoking marijuana when questioned by police during a traffic stop, according to a police report obtained exclusively by KCTV5.
Bowe is facing municipal charges because the amount of drugs found in his vehicle did not rise to the level of felony charges, authorities said.
The Chiefs were on a bye week when Riverside police pulled over Bowe for speeding near West Platte Road and Northwest Business Park shortly before midnight Sunday. Riverside is a small town in the Northland.
Officers said Bowe's 2011 black Audi A8 registered a speed of 48 mph in a 35 mph zone. He apparently had just landed at Kansas City's downtown airport and was on his way home after an out-of-town trip. After the officer stopped Bowe, the wide receiver asked the officer whether the nearby Sonic was open then.
While questioning Bowe, the officer detected a strong odor of marijuana from inside his vehicle, authorities said Tuesday. The officer then requested Bowe and two passengers to get out of the vehicle.
"(The officer) detected an odor of marijuana coming out of the vehicle," said Riverside Police Department Major Chris Skinrood.
Once Bowe stepped out of his vehicle, the officer explained to Bowe that he had a drug dog with him and that the canine would alert to an illegal substance.
"Bowe stated that they had smoked a little while waiting at the airport," according to a police report.
The officer discovered a black bag with two containers that had 6.6 grams and 3.8 grams respectively of what is believed to be marijuana in them. Bowe was placed under arrest for the possession of a controlled substance.
The dog alerted to a black backpack. Inside it, a container was found to have 4.2 grams of what was believed to be marijuana in it.
Police said one of the passengers, George A. Thompson, said the backpack belonged to him.
After being arrested for possession of a controlled substance, police said Thompson was searched, and police found two hand-rolled cigarettes, containing what was believed to be 2.2 grams of marijuana.
Bowe and Thompson were both taken to the Riverside Police Department for booking on municipal charges.
Bowe's Florida driver's license was expired. His insurance was also apparently expired. He initially said he did not have his driver's license with him, but it was found during the search. He also said his brother was involved in the placement of the marijuana among his possessions.
Attorney Patrick Lewis, who does not represent Bowe, said 20 states and the District of Columbia have laws in place that allow the use of medical marijuana. But Kansas and Missouri are not among them, and that potentially poses a huge problem for Bowe.
"It would seem like if it is going to be legal in one place, it should be legal across the United States, but with federalism, we don't have that. There are place across the country where alcohol is illegal, and he has run into a state case of the same making," Lewis said.
Bowe was released after posting a $750 bond. Thompson was charged with possession of a controlled substance and faced a $500 bond.
The third passenger in the car, who was not charged, posted bond for both men, and they were released with a court date of Dec. 18.
Skinrood said Bowe was polite and cooperative during the entire process.
The officer followed procedure and did not give Bowe preferential treatment because of his celebrity status, Skinrood said.
"It's unfortunate it happened the way it did, but we treat everyone the same and hope it pans out for him," he said.
Bowe's home is about two miles from where he was pulled over. KCTV5 went to the wide receiver's home but was unable to speak with him.
Bowe faces a fine of $75 to $500, and jail time of one day to six months if he is convicted.
In 2009, Bowe was suspended for four games for violation of the NFL's substance abuse policy after he tested positive for a diuretic. This governs steroid violations.
A spokesman for the Chiefs said they are aware of the situation and have no further comment at this time.
The team also said they don't know if Bowe will play Sunday in the AFC West showdown against the Denver Broncos. The two teams play at Arrowhead on Dec. 1.
Based on how the league has handled prior cases, Bowe could play in both of those games if the charges are still pending.
According to league rules, Bowe could not face a suspension until the charges in Riverside are fully adjudicated. League policy says he could face a one-game suspension for his first drug offense. If he has a previous undisclosed positive test, he could face a four-game suspension.
The performance enhancement rules are governed by a different set of guidelines than drug charges such as what Bowe now faces.
An advertisement by Papa John's to promote Bowe's foundation has been pulled from football games this weekend.
Riverside police said that they would not release the dash-cam video until after the court case is resolved.
Bowe was recently featured in a Sports Illustrated article on the Chiefs as an example of their 9-0 start. Bowe was credited with maturing and coach Andy Reid had joked that Bowe, who has helped call some offensive plays, could see a future in the NFL as an assistant coach.
During his initial seasons, Bowe was often criticized for his immaturity and not playing hard on all downs especially when he was needed as a blocker.
In a state survey by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Riverside was listed in the top 100 of cities writing the most tickets per square mile.
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