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Plea Is Entered in Court by Irvin

July 31, 2001|From Associated Press

Former Dallas Cowboy receiver Michael Irvin pleaded not guilty Monday in Denton, Texas, to a cocaine-possession charge, but his lawyer insisted the case might never reach trial.

If convicted of possessing less than a gram of the drug, Irvin could face six months to two years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000.

But attorney Peter Ginsberg contends Irvin was arrested on one charge and is being prosecuted on another. Ginsberg said he is concerned about the nearly yearlong span between the arrest and indictment.

Lee Ann Breading, an assistant district attorney, said the case was delayed, in part, by the investigation and laboratory tests.

Irvin, who pleaded no contest to felony cocaine possession in 1996, was indicted in June, 10 months after his arrest at a Dallas apartment where law enforcement officers said they found marijuana and ecstasy pills. Irvin has insisted the drugs were not his.

Irvin retired in July 2000 after 12 seasons in the NFL.

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Defensive end Michael Boireau of the Minnesota Vikings will miss the season because of a relapse of a rare and incurable muscular disorder.

Boireau was diagnosed with ocular myasthenia gravis, a neuromuscular condition that causes muscle fatigue around the eyes.

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New England Patriot linebacker Andy Katzenmoyer said Monday he "just panicked" when he bolted from training camp in Smithfield, R.I., Friday without telling Coach Bill Belichick or other team personnel.

Katzenmoyer said he needed time to think after experiencing neck pain during contact drills last week. Katzenmoyer had neck surgery in November.

He returned to camp Sunday and said he plans to undergo more tests before deciding when to return to the field.

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Linebacker Jessie Tuggle of the Atlanta Falcons will be sidelined three to four weeks following surgery to repair torn ligaments in his right thumb.

The five-time Pro Bowl selection hurt his thumb during training camp on Saturday.

Tuggle was coming back from the most serious injury of his career. He missed the final eight games last season after tearing a ligament in his left knee.

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The Washington Redskins signed defensive end Michael Bankston, a starter for the Cincinnati Bengals last season.

Bankston made 14 starts last season and had 64 tackles.

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Mark Ingram, a former receiver with the Miami Dolphins, was sentenced in Miami to six months in federal prison for possession of counterfeit money.

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