Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman, who was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of vehicular assault and hit and run, was released Friday from the King County Jail without charges filed.
Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman was released from the King County Jail on Friday afternoon without charges being filed.
Coleman, who was arrested Wednesday night after authorities said the vehicle he was driving struck a car and he left the scene of the crash, had a court hearing set for 2:30 p.m. Friday, but it was canceled. The King County Prosecutor’s Office said he would be released without charges filed.
“You can only hold somebody for 72 hours under state law pending the charges, but the toxicology will take longer than that,” Prosecutor’s Office spokesman Dan Donohoe said.
“It’s going to take several weeks. That’s not out of the ordinary,” Donohoe said.
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Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Friday that he was waiting to talk to Coleman and then will figure out how to proceed with the player’s immediate future with the team. Carroll said he hoped to speak with Coleman on Saturday morning. Coleman has been indefinitely suspended by the team, with his spot on the 53-man roster filled by the re-signing of receiver B.J. Daniels.
“We haven’t talked to him nor seen him at all,” Carroll said before Coleman was released. “Can’t wait for him to get out, and I think I’ll see him first thing in the morning, and I don’t have any information about it. Right now we are just concerned … he had a serious accident and there were some serious issues there. We are concerned for everybody’s health, and we’ll make sure that that’s the first thing we want to take a look at.”
Asked if the team needs to wait for the investigation to be completed before reinstating Coleman, Carroll said: “We are just waiting it out. We don’t know anything. We haven’t been able to find out a word about what’s going on. We are just thrilled that he is getting out and there are no charges and just take it one step at a time.”
Bellevue police chief Steven Mylett said in a news conference Thursday that “there was enough evidence there to lead us to suspect that perhaps drugs or alcohol could have been involved.”
Coleman, 24, was booked into the downtown Seattle jail on investigation of vehicular assault and hit and run. He was initially held without bond.
According to police, Coleman was driving a Dodge pickup eastbound in the 13600 block of Southeast 36th Street about 6:20 p.m. Wednesday when his vehicle struck a Honda Civic traveling in the same direction.
Mylett said Coleman’s car was traveling at “a high rate of speed” at the time of the crash. The speed limit on the road is 35 mph, Mylett said. The man driving the other car sustained “serious but non-life-threatening injuries” and was taken to a hospital, Mylett said. Coleman did not report being injured.
Police said Coleman left the scene on foot. Officers found him eight minutes after the accident standing barefoot two blocks away, Mylett said, standing along the roadway on Southeast 37th Street.
Coleman was cooperative when officers contacted him, the chief said.
Asked what led police to believe drugs or alcohol could be involved, Mylett said, “It’s going really toward statements that were made and observations from the officer at the scene. All I can say is there was enough to warrant us bringing the DRE (drug recognition expert) out there and do sobriety tests and to secure a search warrant for his blood.”
Mylett said Coleman did not say why he left the scene of the accident. Mylett said that would be a focus of the investigation.
Coleman’s agents, Derrick Fox and Mark Bloom, released a statement that read, in part: “While the facts of the case are still being determined, it seems Derrick may have fallen asleep while driving home from a Seahawks’ facility. … We will continue to work closely with the local officials while a full investigation is conducted.”
Mylett said he could not comment about whether Coleman had fallen asleep.
Coleman’s lawyer, Bellevue-based Stephen W. Hayne, said he was confident charges will not be filed. Hayne released to television stations, as well as to the Seahawks, a roughly three-minute video Hayne took of him interviewing Coleman hours after the accident that Hayne says shows Coleman was not under the influence.