John Bowlen arrested on domestic violence charges

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- John Bowlen, son of Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, was held in the Arapahoe County Jail overnight after an arrest Wednesday on domestic violence charges.

John Bowlen was arrested around 10:15 p.m. Wednesday after he allegedly pushed his girlfriend against a bathroom wall, police said. According to a Glendale police affidavit, they were responding to a dropped 911 call.

"When [Bowlen] pushed [the caller] against the wall, she dropped the cellphone, at which point he picked it up and hung up the connection with 911," Glendale police said in a statement.

Upon arrival, police heard a man yelling and a woman crying when they arrived at the apartment. After entering, Bowlen told officers, "I didn't do anything wrong! I didn't do anything and I'm going to call Harvey [Steinberg, his lawyer]," the affidavit said.

Police said the woman came out of the bathroom and told them Bowlen had become enraged when she mentioned "contacting 'help' for Bowlen when he made comments to kill someone he had a prior conflict with."

The woman told police that Bowlen was under the influence of alcohol and "whippets," a nitrous oxide-filled cartridge that users inhale to get high.

The woman said she told Bowlen she was going to call 911 because of his behavior and went into the bathroom to make the call. She said Bowlen ran in and shoved her against the wall, causing her to drop her cellphone. She told police she wasn't hurt but feared for her safety.

When the dispatcher called the number back, Bowlen answered and said he was the owner of the Broncos and that nothing was wrong. Meanwhile, a woman could be heard yelling in the background, police said.

Bowlen was held overnight in lieu of bail and had a court appearance Thursday afternoon. Courthouse records show he was held on two Class 3 misdemeanor counts: third-degree assault and harassment.

He was granted a pretrial release in court Thursday. Bond was set at $1,000, and his next court date is July 6. The judge said Bowlen had to stay sober, couldn't handle firearms and was allowed contact with the alleged victim but that they couldn't live together.

Bowlen was placed on an "indefinite leave of absence" from the team Thursday afternoon.

"We are disappointed to learn of the matter involving John Bowlen, who is a son of Owner Pat Bowlen and an administrative employee with the organization. While this is a personal issue, he is accountable to all club and league conduct policies," the Broncos said in a statement. "As such, John will be placed on an indefinite leave of absence from the organization."

John Bowlen was among the Broncos employees who attended domestic violence seminars the team held last year. The Broncos held two sessions at their suburban practice complex -- one primarily for coaches and players, the other for other football staff -- and two sessions for their employees who work at the downtown stadium. The Broncos were one of the first teams in the NFL to conduct mandatory domestic violence training for all employees.

Bowlen is one of Pat Bowlen's seven children. Pat Bowlen, who has Alzheimer's disease, stepped away from the day-to-day operations of the team last year.

The team is currently operated by the Bowlen Family Trust, and team CEO Joe Ellis has final authority on all decisions. Ellis has said Pat Bowlen's hope was that the team would continue to operate in the trust until one of Bowlen's children was ready to run the franchise.

John Bowlen, 29, has worked in a variety of departments with the team in recent years and is currently a corporate partnerships coordinator.

It is the second domestic violence arrest in just over a year for a child of a Broncos executive. Jack Elway, son of Broncos executive vice president of football operations and general manager John Elway, was arrested in May 2014 on charges of disturbing the peace and assaulting his then-girlfriend.

Jack Elway eventually pleaded guilty to the disturbing the peace charge. The assault charge was dropped by the Denver city attorney's office.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.