Vikings' Robinson charged with DWI, felony fleeing

MANKATO, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings' long-term investment in receiver Koren Robinson looked suddenly shaky on Wednesday after a new DWI arrest that threatened to cost the team one of its top offensive players.

Robinson, who made the Pro Bowl last season after alcohol problems derailed his career in Seattle, was arrested Tuesday night after police in St. Peter clocked his blue BMW sedan going more than 100 mph in a 55 mph zone.

Robinson refused to stop for officers, according to police reports. He was finally arrested by police about 10 miles away in Mankato, where the Vikings hold their training camp.

On Wednesday, Robinson was charged in Nicollet County with fleeing from police, a felony, along with two DWI charges and three other misdemeanors. A criminal complaint said a field test measured Robinson's blood-alcohol content at 0.11 percent.

He appeared at a brief court hearing wearing an orange jail
jumpsuit and chained at the ankles. Afterward, he smiled at
reporters but didn't respond to questions as he left the courthouse
with his wife, Joy, and a friend. His next court appearance is Oct.

His attorney, Joe Tamburino, said Robinson was looking forward
to being back with the Vikings as soon as possible.

"Mr. Robinson is a fine individual," Tamburino said. "He
takes these matters very seriously."

His agent, Alvin Keels, didn't immediately respond to messages for comment.

Vikings coach Brad Childress said Wednesday he learned of the arrest soon after Robinson missed the team's 11 p.m. curfew Tuesday. Players had the day off after Monday night's preseason game against Oakland.

"I couldn't be more disappointed for him, for this football
team, and for the community to have that happen," said Childress.
He said it was too soon to determine how the arrest will affect
Robinson's status with the team.

The 26-year-old Robinson's prior history with the league includes a four-game suspension in 2004 for a second violation of the NFL's substance-abuse policy while playing for Seattle. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello wouldn't comment directly on Robinson's new arrest, but said the league reviews cases based on its policy.

In the NFL's program, a third offense means a one-year suspension. It's not clear whether this arrest is automatically a violation, but Robinson almost certainly won't be playing for a while.

After pleading guilty to driving under the influence in 2005, Robinson's tumultuous tenure with the Seahawks ended when he was
released. He later spent 28 days in a treatment facility for
alcohol abuse.

Given a second chance with the Vikings, he worked his way up the depth chart and finished with 22 catches for 347 yards and one touchdown while starting five games. As a kickoff returner, he made
his first trip to the Pro Bowl.

Convinced his problems were in the past, the Vikings signed him to be their top receiver with a new three-year contract in March
worth up to $12.7 million that included $5.5 million in guaranteed

"Just in doing my research, I thought he was in a good place,"
Childress said.

In July, Robinson strongly denied a report that he had slipped out of sobriety. He said in an interview that he was taking some relapse prevention classes in preparation for the season, when there's less time to work on maintaining his recovery and more stress from a pressure to perform and a burden on the body.

"I'm not in rehab. I'm still doing good. I'm still not drinking. I'm still working out. I'm still Koren, the cheerful, happy guy you all saw last year," he said then.

Robinson also said he knew he'd always be under scrutiny as a
recovering alcoholic.

"What a demon it must be," Childress said. "I saw no
indications out here. He was having a great training camp.
Obviously, it was too strong of power and too strong of an

The Vikings have become infamous for finding trouble off the field, including their lewd boat party last fall that led to misdemeanors for four players, though charges against former quarterback Daunte Culpepper were dropped.

Owner Zygi Wilf, who completed his purchase of the club last summer, has vowed to clean up the team's image in the community.

"One of the reasons I'm here in this job and one of the
mandates from the Wilf family is that they want this ship run
right," Childress said. "I am trying to create a culture of

Other Vikings said little about the situation.

"We're all adults. You have to be responsible for your actions," said cornerback Antoine Winfield. "He did what he did. It's over. We have to move on."

Travis Taylor, who filled Robinson's spot with the first team
during Wednesday's practice, talked to the other receivers about
staying together.

"I love Koren as a friend. Forget football. It doesn't
matter," he said. "I love Koren dearly. That's the bottom line."

At Seattle's camp, coach Mike Holmgren said he was saddened by the news.

"When he was with us, I rooted for him. I tried to help him. I felt I kind of failed the kid somehow," Holmgren said. "He's got
to get a grip on this before something bad happens."