Justin Cox has a history of arrests. The latest may have cost him his professional football career.
After police in Regina,Saskatchewan, charged the 24-year-old defensive back withassault causing bodily harm, the Saskatchewan Roughriders released himWednesday.
Canadian Football League commissionerJeffrey L. Orridge then issued a statement telling other CFL clubs they are not allowed to sign Cox.
"Earlier today, the Saskatchewan Roughrider Football Club released Justin Cox after being informed of an incident involving domestic violence," Orridge said in thestatement released Wednesday. "Our clubs have been informed that should any team decide to sign Mr. Cox to a Standard Player Contract, I will refuse to register that contract. This authority rests with the Commissioner under our league’s Constitution.
"The Canadian Football League is committed to doing its part to eradicate violence against women. As is stated in our Policy on Violence Against Women, the CFL condemns violence against women in all of its forms, including domestic violence, sexual violence, sexual assault, and verbal abuse, as well as the disrespectful and demeaning attitudes that foster violence or the tolerance of such violence.
"In keeping with the policy, the CFL has worked with Saskatchewan to ensure appropriate outreach is made to local police and support and counseling services. We must all do what we can to ensure the safety of women and to urge perpetrators to seek the help they need to change their behaviour and stop the violence."
To the fans I apologize for my actions and decisions. The truth will only be known by those that were there during the incident.— Justin Cox (@SEC_Phenom) April 19, 2017
I want to thank the Saskatchewan Roughriders for giving me a chance to fulfil my dream, I'm sorry for letting you guys down.— Justin Cox (@SEC_Phenom) April 19, 2017
Cox, who spent two seasons atEast Mississippi Community Collegebefore transferring to Mississippi Statefor his final two years of college, went undrafted in 2015. He was brought in by the Chiefs as a free agent, but did not participate in training camp after he was chargedwith aggravated assault, burglary and trespassing.
He was also suspended the final three games at Mississippi State following a 2014 domestic dispute that resulted in head injuries to his then-girlfriend.
Coxlater pleaded guilty toa misdemeanor charge of trespassing.
Cox signed with the Roughriders last May and was named the team's rookie of the year after starting all 15 games and recording42 defensive tackles, four interceptions and a forced fumble. The Roughriders had given him a two-year contract extension last December.