BILLY SIMMS gets good news in court

Friday, May 4th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

TULSA, Okla. (AP) _ A federal judge moved to prevent former Oklahoma running back Billy Sims from being arrested and having his Heisman Trophy seized Thursday.

U.S. District Judge Sven Erik Holmes signed orders that canceled a June 28 court date and dispersed the final $4,941.67 Sims owed in a child support case.

A check for that amount from the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Retirement Plan arrived earlier in the week, eliminating the need for further legal proceedings, Assistant U.S. Attorney Phil Pinnell said.

Holmes sent Sims to jail for a month in January 1998 for breaking a federal child-support law. Sims had pleaded guilty Oct. 10, 1997, to failing to pay $32,900 in child support to Shawnte Renee Sims.

Sims had paid most of that by the sentencing date, and Holmes ordered Sims to pay the $14,025 remaining debt as part of the sentence. No further payments were made until earlier this year, when prosecutors reached an agreement for $9,000 to be taken from one of Sims' bank accounts.

Federal prosecutors could have obtained an arrest warrant for Sims after he failed to show up for a March 21 hearing before U.S. Magistrate Claire Eagan. Prosecutors declined to do that unless a repayment plan involving the pension fund fell through. action. At the time, Pinnell said he probably would not follow through on getting an arrest warrant unless a repayment plan involving the pension fund fell through.