About eight weeks after being investigated for being involved in an on-campus confrontation involving air-soft riles, Florida wide receiver Kadarius Toney was found to have an authentic AR-15 rifle lying across the backseat of his car after being pulled over for a seat belt violation.
Toney and UF defensive back Brian Edwards were pulled over by the Gainesville Police Department on July 22, according to an incident report released Tuesday by GPD. The video of the traffic stop was released today.
According to the report, Toney, who was driving, and Edwards were pulled over at about 12:30 a.m. Upon approaching the vehicle and ordering to stop, Toney began driving away, the report said. Toney slowed down before attempting to drive away again, the report states, then obeyed the officer’s commands to stop the vehicle.
After noticing the rifle in the backseat, officers requested Toney and Edwards step out of the vehicle to be searched, according to the report, whereupon Edwards “began to tense up and pull away.” At one point in the video, officers inform Toney he “can’t keep an AR in the car like that”.
Officers discussed whether the rifle was “on or about him” to determine whether or not Toney had violated the state’s open-carry law. GPD officers agreed Toney did not violate the law.
As a result, both players were detained by GPD while officers checked the players’ criminal history. Toney told police he bought the rifle and had it with him “for protection because of the locals.” Police say in the report that Toney and Edwards were placed in handcuffs for the officers’ safety. Both players were released at the scene after officers found they had no criminal history.
State Attorney Bill Cervone said Tuesday he doesn’t expect any charges to be filed based on the information GPD provided.
Though it resulted in no criminal charges, the July 22 case is the latest in a string of incidents involving police and the University of Florida football program.
On June 5, after a May 28 incident involving seven football players and an alleged gambler, Toney and UF defensive tackle Kyree Campbell met with UF police investigators. Video of the incident showed both players possessing guns, which upon inspection were revealed to be airsoft rifles painted to resemble an AR-15. Vernell Brown, UF’s director of player development, told UPD the airsoft rifles would not be on campus again.
Less than two months later, Toney had apparently traded in his airsoft rifle for a real one.