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Bizarre feud between two former Philadelphia Eagles players escalates into criminal case

Philly.com (TNS)

It appears a bizarre feud between two former Eagles players is escalating into criminal charges.


An arrest warrant for third-degree felony criminal mischief has been issued in Jacksonville, Fla., against ex-Eagles wide receiver Jabar Gaffney, according to his attorney. Gaffney is accused of vandalizing the car of former Eagles teammate Lito Sheppard in June.

News 4 WJXT in Jacksonville was first to report on the warrant.

Sheppard told Jacksonville Beach Police that his car stalled out a few blocks from where he had just eaten dinner. After his dealership told Sheppard his car had been vandalized, the restaurant let the former Eagles defender view surveillance video from the parking lot, which showed a man tampering with the gas tank on his BMW and a woman bending down near each tire.

Gaffney, a second-round draft pick out of Florida who never played a game during his brief tenure in Philadelphia, allegedly poured an unknown substance into the gas tank after prying the cap off, according to a police report obtained by First Coast News.

Gaffney’s attorney, Seth Schwartz, told the Inquirer and Daily News that the man in the video was not his client, and claimed detectives never contacted him nor Gaffney during their investigation.

“Jabbar’s not a small guy. He works out regularly. It doesn’t look like him at all, aside from it being a black male,” Schwartz said.

The Jacksonville Beach Police Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Gaffney and Sheppard are cousins, and played football together at Raines High School in Jacksonville. The pair remained teammates while attending the University of Florida., where both were named first-team All-Americans.

In June, a judge issued temporary restraining order against Gaffney after Sheppard claimed he was being targeted by his former teammate, and feared for the safety of his family and his property. In Shepard’s petition for the restraining order, he said his issues with Gaffney date back to 2011, over false claims that Sheppard had an affair with Gaffney’s wife.

Sheppard, the Eagles’ first-round pick in the 2002 NFL Draft, played 10 seasons in the NFL — seven of them in Philadelphia. He ended his career with 19 interceptions and 303 tackles.

Gaffney spent 11 seasons in the NFL with five different teams, with the bulk of his playing time coming with the Houston Texans and New England Patriots. He ended his career with 5,690 receiving yards and 24 touchdowns.