The KSU starting quarterback who was arrested Saturday for allegedly groping a housekeeper in a Chicago hotel was charged with second-degree animal cruelty in Frankfort in June.
District court records allege that Martez James, a 22-year-old senior at KSU from Detroit, mistreated a female brown and white pitbull by confining it in an unclean enclosure without enough food, water or shelter.
Frankfort Animal Control Officer Mike Pardi seized the animal on June 14 from James’ home on Landings Drive. County Attorney Rick Sparks, who will prosecute James at trial this month, said the dog was given to the Franklin County Humane Society.
“The animal is still being held as evidence, the last time I heard,” Sparks said. He added that the Humane Society often puts such animals in foster homes during the judicial process.
Though the dog was taken in June, James wasn’t served a court summons until Sept. 17. His court date is Oct. 23.
Sparks said he had to make some follow-up calls to get James served and was a little confused as to why it took so long considering the city has had to take care of the dog this whole time.
“I said I was pretty sure we could find him, he’s a quarterback,” Sparks said.
However, he said more serious cases often take precedence, and he tried to get James to trial as soon as possible. He added that while animal cruelty cases attract lots of publicity, he doesn’t see a lot of them in Franklin County.
Sparks said that, to his knowledge, no counsel has been appointed to represent James.
According to the Chicago Tribune, James was arrested at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place Hotel on the morning of Sept. 29 after he allegedly entered a room where a housekeeper was cleaning, asked her for “five minutes of her time” and pressed his body against hers.
James was charged with battery, the Tribune reported, and was released from custody. He will appear in court in Chicago Nov. 15.
James was in town for the 2012 Chicago Football Classic, an annual game between historically black colleges and universities. James was arrested before the game, which KSU lost 17-14 to Albany State University. A Chicago Sun-Times article on the 4 p.m. game says Justin Williams was the KSU quarterback, suggesting James did not play.
A statement KSU sent to The State Journal said James remains a member of the football team.
Spokeswoman Felicia Lewis said she did not have any information on whether James will play in the team’s next game Saturday at Fort Valley State University.
James, whose other Frankfort charges include speeding and driving with a suspended license, declined to comment.