February 17, 2007

Incoming South Carolina QB arrested

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COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina recruit Stephen Garcia was arrested early Saturday morning in a restaurant and nightclub district near the university and charged with drunkenness and failure to stop for a police officer.

According to an incident report from the Columbia Police Department, the 19-year-old quarterback from Florida was approached by an officer responding to a report of an altercation outside a building.

Garcia ran away from the officer and tried to hide in an alley, according to the incident report. When the officer caught up with him, he turned toward the officer "in a threatening manner."

The report says the officer "immediately engaged his baton" but did not use it. The report also says Garcia was trying to zip up his pants and fix his belt. The officer smelled alcohol and said the subject was unsteady on his feet.

The report notes that Garcia is younger than the legal age for drinking alcohol and was arrested.

According to the report, Garcia had been at a private party at a club in the city's Five Points area. He was in jail awaiting a bond hearing Saturday afternoon.

Garcia, a four-star recruit out of Jefferson High in Tampa, Fla., enrolled at South Carolina last month.

Last year, South Carolina's starting quarterback Blake Mitchell also was charged in an incident in the same area near the campus. He was accused of punching a bouncer - an assault charge that was later dropped - and spent a few hours in jail.

Head coach Steve Spurrier was not expected to comment about the arrest, athletic department spokesman Steve Fink said.

For more coverage of South Carolina, visit GamecockCentral.com.


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