Former New York Giants and Pro Football Hall of Fame linebacker Lawrence Taylor was busted early Thursday morning after being accused of raping a 15-year-old girl at a Montebello, N.Y., hotel, police tell WRNB Radio.
Taylor, who has a history of drug abuse and runs-in with the law, is being charged with third-degree rape, which involves having sex with a minor, the Journal News reported on its website. Ramapo police said Taylor has yet to be formally charged.
Ramapo authorities told the Journal News that the alleged victim was also beaten at the hotel and treated at a hospital.
“She was a runaway since March and there was a pimp involved,” Ramapo supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence told the newspaper. “She got punched in the face. We’re not sure who did it.”
An attorney for Taylor, Kenneth Gribetz, said he expected Taylor to be arraigned later Thursday.
“We’re confident his innocence will be proven,” he said.
Police said they would hold a news conference this afternoon. They did not immediately respond to questions about the circumstances of the arrest.
Taylor, 51, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1999 and competed in ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” last year. He had a highly publicized struggle with drug addiction and has had multiple legal issues in retirement.
A quick, fierce and athletic linebacker who redefined his position, Taylor anchored the Giants’ defense and led New York to Super Bowls titles in 1987 and 1991. He was selected to the NFL’s 75th Anniversary All-Time Team.
A 10-time Pro Bowler, he was the NFL Most Valuable Player in 1986 and the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 1981, 1982 and 1986. He recorded 132.5 sacks, which doesn’t included the 9.5 sacks in 1981 when the statistic wasn’t official.
In 2001, Taylor was convicted of possessing drug paraphernalia in New Jersey. The conviction stemmed from the September 1998 discovery in a hotel room of a butane torch and other materials commonly used to smoke crack.
In 1996 and 1997, he was arrested in South Carolina and Florida on drug charges. In those cases, he either admitted his guilt or agreed to enter a pretrial intervention program.
In 2000, he drew five years of federal probation for filing false tax returns and for tax evasion. Last November he was charged in Florida with leaving the scene of an accident.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.