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The Inside Track

UCLA's Drew Cleared in Case

June 20, 2006|Lonnie White

Assault charges against former UCLA running back Maurice Drew were dropped after a surveillance video showed Drew leaving the Westwood Denny's restaurant at the start of the April 23 altercation.

"From the very beginning, we were confident that upon completion of a thorough investigation into the matter, Maurice would be vindicated," Drew's attorney, Adisa Bakari, said in a statement. "Needless to say, Maurice is pleased with the decision."

Drew, selected in the second round of the NFL draft this spring by the Jacksonville Jaguars, was charged along with former Bruins Ricky Manning Jr. and Tyler Ebell for allegedly taking part in an early-morning fight.

According to Sandi Gibbons of the district attorney's office, the prosecution cited "insufficient evidence to proceed" with Drew's case, which was dismissed by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Keith Schwartz.

Manning, who recently signed a free-agent contract with the Chicago Bears, has pleaded not guilty to assault. Ebell, who completed his college career at Texas El Paso after transferring from UCLA, is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday at the Airport Branch Courthouse.

-- Lonnie White

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