Officers Being Sued By Five Kentucky Football Players Who Claim Police Tried To Frame Them For Crime They Did Not Commit

NCAA Football: SEC Media Days
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

After being cleared of burglary charges in 2021 by a grand jury, Kentucky football players Reuben Adams, Jutahn McClain, Vito Tisdale, Joel Williams and Andru Phillips are filing a lawsuit against Lexington police officer Cory Vinlove. Officer Vinlove directed the investigation against the five players. The investigation was an incident which reportedly occurred during a private party that was hosted off University of Kentucky campus grounds.

The lawsuit was filed in U.S District Court. Officer Donnell Gordon, Police Chief Lawrence Weathers and the Lexington-Fayette County Urban Government were also named as defendants alongside Officer Vinlove. The plaintiffs are accusing Officer Vinlove of not having probable cause to arrest and charge them, and say he “embarked on a journey” to falsely frame the players of a burglary crime they did not commit.

Of the original six that were charged, only Tisdale, McClain and Phillips remain with the Kentucky Wildcats. Tisdale is a defensive back entering his junior year, but will reportedly miss the entire 2022 college season due to suffering a torn ACL and MCL injury during spring practice back in March. On top of facing a first-degree burglary charge like the rest of the players, Tisdale was also charged with alleged first-degree wanton endangerment for pointing a firearm at one of the defendants.

The players are represented by one of four attorneys. One of the attorneys is Elliot Slosar of Loevy & Loevy, a civil rights firm that is based in the city of Chicago. Slosar stated in his complaint that this lawsuit is another prime example of damage as a result of corrupt policing in the United States. Slosar also said, “As the lawsuits demonstrate, these five young Black men were targeted by a white officer with an axe to grind and determined to make a name for himself.” The players are seeking punitive damages and compensatory damages of an unspecified amount, as well as attorneys fees.

The Associated Press has more HERE.