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 Saturday, October 23
Warrick pleads guilty to misdemeanor
Associated Press

 TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Peter Warrick will rejoin Florida State for Saturday's game at Clemson after he agreed to a deal that requires no jail time on his theft charge.

The star receiver pleaded guilty Friday to misdemeanor petty theft in connection with a department store scam.

"I appreciate the support shown me through this," Warrick said in a statement released by the school. "I am glad to get the chance to play again.

"I would just like to apologize again to my family, the coaches and my teammates for making the mistake I did. ... I am going to try and focus on the game."

Coach Bobby Bowden called Warrick's reinstatement "a miracle from above."

The settlement met the university's standard for allowing him to play. The school had insisted that the Heisman Trophy contender would not play until he had served any jail time.

Warrick, who sat out Florida State's last two games, can now play when Bowden goes for his 300th career victory.

"He has paid the consequences for his mistake and then some," athletics director Dave Hart Jr. said Friday. "It's time to move past it."

Warrick, a former teammate and a store clerk were charged with felony grand theft when the two players bought more than $400 worth of designer clothes Sept. 29 at a Dillard's department store for $21.40.

"I don't mean to diminish what he did, but folks it was a discount," Warrick's lawyer, John Kenny, said. "I know the state attorney looked at it that they could find a way to make it a felony."

Judge John Crusoe agreed to terms in which Warrick will serve one year probation, donate the clothes to the Children's Home Society, pay $579 restitution, $295 in court costs, have no contact with Dillard's and spend 30 days on a work program where he will probably clean trash from city streets.

"He's not wearing stripes, he's not in jail, and that's a significant determining factor for the university," Kenny said.

"It was a fair resolution for the state, a fair resolution for Peter Warrick, a fair resolution for the university," the lawyer added. "And we know it's a fair resolution for our fans."

The 22-year-old receiver was in South Carolina with his teammates for the Clemson game when the deal was struck.

Bowden goes for the milestone victory against son Tommy Bowden, the Clemson coach, in the first father-son matchup in Division I-A history.

Kenny and Warrick met Thursday night with Florida State president Sandy D'Alemberte, who had a problem with a player competing if he faced jail.

"I want the jail or prison time behind someone before they play," D'Alemberte said.

Earlier this week, Kenny reached an agreement to reduce the charge to a misdemeanor with the state attorney, but that would have required the player to spend 30 days in jail at the end of the semester. D'Alemberte would not accept that deal.

The former Dillard's clerk, Rachel Myrtil, pleaded no contest Thursday to grand theft and was sentenced to two years' probation, 10 days on a county work program, ordered to pay $308 in court costs and stay out of Dillard's department stores.

Laveranues Coles, who paid for the clothes, was kicked off the Florida State team.


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 Bobby Bowden thinks Warrick was getting punished for being an athlete.
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 John Kenny wants to protect Peter Warrick.
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 Bobby Bowden feels bad for Peter Warrick.
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