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UT football players Da'Rick Rogers and Darren Myles, Jr., charged after fight at Bar Knoxville on Cumberland Avenue strip; off-duty police officer assaulted

3:19 PM, Jul 13, 2010   |    comments
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According to the Knoxville Police Department, the officer injured while trying to break up the fight involved several UT football players, Robert Capouellez, was discharged from UT Medical Center late Monday. 

6:00 a.m. update: KPD officer in serious condition, never released from hospital

A nursing administrator with UT Medical Center said Knoxville police officer Robert Capouellez is still in UT Medical Center in serious condition Saturday morning. She said the hospital incorrectly notified Knoxville media that Capouellez had been released Friday night.

11:30 update: KPD officer released from hospital

Knoxville police officer Robert Capouellez was released from UT Medical Center Friday evening, a nursing administrator said. Capouellez was injured in the fight at Bar Knoxville early Friday morning that led to charges against two UT football players.

7:30 update:  Bar Knoxville owner discusses suspended players

Sandy Morton, the owner of Bar Knoxville, where the fight took place, said King and Walls were at the establishment Friday morning.  However, Morton could not say what, if any, part Walls and King played in the incident.

6:00 update:  Dooley dismisses one player, suspends two others

Friday evening, Coach Derek Dooley dismissed Darren Myles from the football team.  Myles is accused of striking a UTPD officer in the face while running from the Friday early-morning brawl on the Strip.  He indefinitely suspended freshman Marlon Walls and rising sophomore Greg King.  It is not yet clear what role Walls and King played in the incident.

Dooley released the following statement Friday evening:

"Officer Capouellez has been moved to a room and is currently listed in stable condition. The individual assaulted inside the bar has been identified as Gary Russell, 20.  He was treated at UT Medical Center, then discharged this afternoon.

"It is a privilege, not a right, to be a member of the University of Tennessee football team. The most important responsibility of that privilege is to properly represent this institution and our supporters on and off the field.

"I am disappointed and in many ways embarrassed by the poor judgment displayed on many fronts by several members of our football team last night.

"Although we are still gathering all the facts and some legal proceedings will follow, we have taken some initial levels of discipline resulting from my conversations with the student-athletes who were present.  

"Darren Myles has been permanently dismissed from our football program. Marlon Walls and Greg King have been indefinitely suspended.

"I am respectful of the process that follows with the local authorities and with our institutional guidelines and leadership.

"As I have referenced on many occasions, a change in culture is achieved in time through a combination of education, discipline and support. We will aggressively continue to build on the many positive changes that have occurred over the last five months to ensure our program is represented with class and dignity."

4:30 update: Investigation continues, victims conditions

The Knoxville Police Department says they have interviewed several witnesses regarding the incident that occurred inside the bar as well as the assault on KPD Officer Capouellez.


12:45 Update: University of Tennessee P.D. Reports Released


University of Tennessee Police Department reports indicate another player, Matthew Milton will face charges in a campus melee early Friday morning. 

The UTPD report states charges are also pending against Matthew Milton, an incoming freshman University of Tennessee football player.  The report states those pending charges are for assault and will be coming from the Knoxville Police Department.

Miles enrolled at UT in January, according to UT's Athletic Department.

Additionally, the reports say Darren Myles, Jr. was caught hiding under a white BMW just before being taken into custody.

A UTPD officer saw him under the vehicle, ordered him to come out, and then Myles took off running behind the Howard Baker, Jr. Building on campus.

11:30 Update Arrested players out on bond

According to the Knox County Sheriff's Office, both UT players arrested after a bar fight have been released on bond.  Da'Rick Rogers was released on a $1000 bond.   Darren Myles, Jr. was released on $2000 bond.

11:10 Update on injured officer's condtion

10News spoke with the brother of the officer who was injured, Robert Capouellez.  Todd Capouellez says his brother is going to be fine, though he will likely be in the hospital for a couple more days.  From what he understands about the accident, he says his brother was speaking with a bouncer that he knows, and when the fight moved outside the bar, he tried to help break it up. 

UT Medical Center officials say Capouellez is in stable condition.

Previous story: UT football players arrested after fight

An overnight brawl at a bar on Cumberland Avenue has resulted in assault charges for members of the University of Tennessee football team.

The fight broke out at Bar Knoxville at approximately 1:50 a.m.  Bar owner Sandy Morton said between seven and ten football players "started beating up a customer."

Once bar security was able to get the fight outside the facility, another customer at the bar who was standing outside at the time became involved in the altercation.  That customer, Robert Capouellez, is a Knoxville Police Department Officer who was off-duty.

"We know the officer and he is friends with the staff.  It was his night off and he was here as a customer," said Morton.

As the fight continued outside the bar, KPD officers responed to the scene.  A press release by the Knoxville Police Department said when officers arrived they found Capouellez "lying on the ground unconscious."  Capouellez was transported to UT Medical Center for treatment of a head wound.

"Another individual from inside Bar Knoxville who had been assaulted by multiple individuals was also transported to UT Medical Center with numerous injuries," the release stated.  The name of the second victim will be released once his next of kin has been notified.

(Read the full press release at the bottom of this story).

The release by KPD public information officer Darrell DeBusk confirmed the fight involved several individuals who may be "associated with the University of Tennessee football program."

Knoxville Police have charged Da'Rick Rogers with Disorderly Conduct and Resisting Arrest.

Read the affidavit of complaint for Da'Rick Rogers

Rogers was a five-star recruit from Georgia and part of a highly touted 2010 recruiting class for the University of Tennessee football team.

Another player, Darren Myles, Jr., fled the scene at Bar Knoxville and later assaulted a University of Tennessee Police Department officer.  Myles now faces charges of assault, resisting arrest, and evading arrest.  No court date has been set for these charges as of yet.

Read the affidavit of complaint for Darren Myles, Jr

The UTPD officer's affidavit states that the officer identified himself to Myles as a police officer at Bar Knoxville.  Darren Myles then fled from him on foot towards Lake Avenue.  The officer made contact with Myles and attempted to place him into custody.  Myles then broke free from the officer's grip and struck the officer in the face. Myles was later taken into custody by a different officer.

The investigation is still ongoing regarding Myles Jr.'s involvment in the fight at Bar Knoxville.

Myles was arrested in April on charges of public intoxication, disorderly conduct, and resisting arrest.  His arraignment on those charges is set for August 12, 2010, in 4th Sessions Court.

Other members of the UT football team have been detained for questioning by KPD, but face no charges as of 10:30 a.m.  Among those seen in video at the scene are senior wide receiver Denarius Moore.

Sandy Morton, owner of the bar, described the fight as follows.

"It was a regular Thursday night. We always give VIP status to the football players," said Sandy Morton, owner of Bar Knoxville.  "We never had a problem with them in the past. All of a sudden they randomly started beating up a customer, another patron. Security intervened and got it [the fight] outside. They [the football players] proceeded to beat up an off-duty officer that was a customer."

Morton said all UT football players are given "V.I.P. status" and have to sign in when they first arrive.

Tennessee Athletic Department has no comment regarding the situation.

KPD Statement, sent July 9, 2010, at 7:20 a.m.

This morning at approximately 1:50 a.m., officers responded to Bar Knoxville located at 1820 Cumberland Avenue after being notified that an off-duty police officer had been assaulted. When officers arrived on the scene they located Knoxville Police Department Officer Robert Capouellez lying on the ground unconscious. Officer Capouellez was transported to UT Medical Center for treatment of a head wound. Another individual from inside Bar Knoxville who had been assaulted by multiple individuals was also transported to UT Medical Center with numerous injuries. I will release the name of that victim once his next of kin has been notified.

According to multiple witnesses, the male victim from inside the bar was involved in an altercation with another patron when several additional patrons jumped into the fight. Employees of the bar intervened and push the fight outside onto the sidewalk. Officer Capouellez intervened in an attempt to stop the fight when he was attacked. According to witnesses, the officer was hit in the head and knocked to the ground. Once on the ground the suspect kicked the officer several times before fleeing the scene. Six individuals were identified as potential suspects. These individuals were located and detained for questioning. It appears several of these individuals may be associated with the University of Tennessee football program. One of the suspects has been turned over to UTPD who will file charges after one of their officers was assaulted while attempting to take this individual into custody. You will need to contact UTPD for additional information regarding this arrest and potential charges. We have charged Darick Rogers (DOB 6-18-91) with Disorderly Conduct and Resisting Arrest

Several witnesses as well as potential suspects are still being interviewed. I will release additional information as the investigation moves forward.  I will not release any names of individuals detained until they are charged.

Darrell DeBusk
Public Information Officer
Knoxville Police Department

Stay with 10 News and for more details on this developing story.

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