FSU's Winston suspended from baseball team after shoplifting charge
Reigning Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston, a two-sport star at Florida State, was suspended from the baseball team Wednesday after receiving a citation for taking food from a supermarket without paying for it.
Winston walked out of an area Publix on Tuesday night with $32.72 worth of crab legs and crawfish and later told sheriff's deputies he forgot to pay for the food, Major Michael Wood of the Leon County Sheriff's Office said.
Wood said Winston made no effort to go back and pay for the items.
The 20-year-old redshirt sophomore was issued a civil citation, which Wood described as a pre-arrest diversion program implemented to keep first-time offenders who have committed non-violent minor crimes out of the criminal justice system. Wood said anyone meeting that criteria is eligible for the program.
Winston has seven days to make arrangements to serve 20 hours of community service. If he doesn't complete the program the case will be diverted to the state attorney's office and Winston would likely be charged with petty theft, Wood said.
"We have no reason to believe he's not going to fulfill all the obligations associated with this program," said Wood. "He's agreed to do it, Publix has agreed to allow for it, so at this juncture the process has to take its course."
Wood said Winston would "in all likelihood" make restitution for what he took.
Seminoles baseball coach Mike Martin said Winston was suspended as a result of the civil citation. Martin said he is "confident (Winston) will complete his community service obligation and the situation will be resolved soon."
Florida State athletic department rules say a student-athlete with a civil citation is eligible to practice and compete and that it's up to the head coach whether they are permitted to do so.
The length of Winston's suspension was not announced.
Winston was cleared by the Florida state attorney's office in December over allegations he sexually assaulted a woman in 2012. The announcement came a little over a week before he won the Heisman Trophy and about a month before he threw the winning touchdown pass in the final seconds of the BCS National Championship Game against Auburn.
Seminoles football coach Jimbo Fisher said he supported Martin's decision to suspend Winston, who is an outfielder and pitcher.