Georgia defensive tackle Devonte Wyatt tackles Auburn running back JaTarvious Whitlow during the first half in a NCAA college football game on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, in Athens. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com
Photo: ccompton@ajc.com/Curtis Compton
Photo: ccompton@ajc.com/Curtis Compton

Georgia’s Devonte Wyatt arrested on misdemeanor charge

Georgia senior defensive lineman Devonte Wyatt was arrested Tuesday by the Clarke County Sheriff’s Office on a charge of criminal trespass/damage to property/family violence.

The Athens-Clarke County jail booking report indicated the charges are of the misdemeanor variety. Wyatt’s bond is set at $1,500.

It’s the first public arrest of the new year for coach Kirby Smart’s football team, which is expected to compete for a championship in 2020.

Smart issued a statement on the arrest Wednesday. It read: “I’m disappointed in the misconduct that is outlined in the incident report. This is not indicative of the behavior we expect from our student-athletes who represent the University of Georgia and our football program. We will address it internally in the appropriate way.”

According to the UGA Police Department, officers responded to a 911 call at 3:12 p.m. Friday at McWhorter Hall after a report of a male and female fighting. When the officers arrived, individuals matching the description of those fighting were walking out of the building. The report states that Wyatt was identified as one of the parties involved and he was later stopped walking through the lobby of the building.

According to the reporting officer, it was learned there was a verbal altercation between the parties. Wyatt allegedly kicked the female’s door “multiple times from the hallway, damaging the door and forcing it open.”

The report also states that Wyatt lived with the female, on and off, which led to the incident being classified as a “family violence” incident.

Both Wyatt and the female were released “pending the completion of any follow-up investigation,” and “neither party indicated they were in fear for their safety.”

A warrant for Wyatt’s arrest was issued at 4:40 p.m. Monday, and the Athens-Clarke County booking reported indicates it was served at 11:35 p.m. Tuesday.

Wyatt is part of a defense returning nine starters off a unit that throttled Baylor in the Sugar Bowl 26-14. Wyatt, who played in 13 of the 14 games and was second on the team with 19 quarterback pressures, was among those nine returning starters.

Six players were arrested over a six-week span last spring, drawing national headlines.

Smart took the blame, saying last spring: “I’ve obviously done a poor job with this group of connecting and making sure they listen and understand thing.”

Four of the six players who were arrested last offseason are no longer with the team.

Smart took harsh measures to stem the arrest trend that emerged last spring, making players run stadium steps in front of a crowd of boosters during a closed scrimmage.

The Bulldogs start spring drills in mid-March leading up to the annual G-Day game April 18.

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