Phillips Trial To Start in August

Wednesday, June 28th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — A trial on charges that include beating a girlfriend is scheduled Aug. 16 for Lawrence Phillips, a one-time Nebraska football star with numerous off-field problems before and during his NFL career.

Phillips, 25, free on bond of $130,000 reduced from an original $630,000, appeared in Superior Court for arraignment on Tuesday. He pleaded innocent to a new charge of false imprisonment filed two weeks after the alleged incident. A pretrial hearing was scheduled July 19 on four felony charges and two misdemeanor counts.

The alleged beating occurred May 27 when police were called to Phillips' Beverly Hills residence about 4 a.m. His girlfriend was treated for injuries at the scene, police said.

Phillips is charged with felony counts of false imprisonment, corporal injury to a cohabitant, making a terrorist threat and conspiring to dissuade a witness. The misdemeanor counts are having a concealed firearm in a vehicle and vandalism with damage under $400. Another misdemeanor charge of carrying a loaded firearm was dropped.

The running back has a previous domestic violence conviction, involving a girlfriend while in college. He pleaded no contest and was put on probation.

A first-round draft choice of the St. Louis Rams in 1996, Phillips was later released for insubordination. He played 25 games for the Rams but his 19 months in St. Louis were marked by three arrests and 23 days in jail for violating probation after a drunken-driving arrest in California.

He was subsequently signed by the Miami Dolphins and then released after a misdemeanor battery conviction in Florida, where he pleaded no contest to hitting a woman in a bar.

He revived his career as the outstanding runner in NFL Europe in 1999, and was signed by the San Francisco 49ers — only to be cut last fall for missing practice.