A former NFL player has been arrested after allegedly staging a hate crime against himself that resulted in trashing his own place of business.
Edawn Louis Coughman, 31, played for several NFL teams from 2012 to 2016, including the Washington Redskins, Dallas Cowboys, and Arizona Cardinals.
He was arrested last week after his business Coughman’s Creamery in Lawrenceville, Ga., was reportedly subject to vandalism and burglary. The establishment's walls were tagged with racial slurs such as “monkey,” swastikas, and the acronym “MAGA." TV’s also appeared to have been stripped from the walls. The next-door establishment Create and Bake Restaurant was also vandalized.
Yahoo! Lifestyle reports,
In a press statement, Cpl. Michele Pihera said a shopping plaza maintenance worker saw someone burglarizing the restaurant late Wednesday evening and called police, adding that the alleged burglar was driving a black Silverado with no license plates. Police pulled over the truck thinking it could be a suspect in the burglary, and saw that Coughman was driving.
Police searched the back of Coughman’s truck and found several flat-screen TVs that looked strange.
Officers checked the inside of the restaurant and speculated that the TVs were probably ripped off the wall. They described the paint used on the graffitied walls as being fresh, and claim that when they inspected Coughman's hands, they saw black spray paint.
Apparently, Coughman had reported the incident to his insurance company but did not call 911, according to police. He was pulled over directly afterward.
"He had reported this incident to his insurance company prior to officers conducting that first pull-over," Cpl. Pihera told local station WSB-TV. "He was attempting to leave that shopping center when our officers conducted that felony stop. Everything lined up for this perfect arrest."
Coughman has since been “charged with insurance fraud, making a false report and a tag violation for taking his license plate off,” NY Daily News reports.
Coughman made bail but police said he may face additional charges.
This reportedly was not his first brush with the law, having been arrested before in Canada for gun possession.
For more, watch the WSB-TV report below.