ORLANDO, FL - DECEMBER 29: Running back James Wilder Jr. #32 of the Florida State Seminoles rushes upfield against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in the Champs Sports Bowl December 29, 2011 at the Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida. FSU won 21 - 7. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
James Wilder Jr., a sophomore running back for the Florida State Seminoles, has been arrested after attempting to prevent a law enforcement officer from arresting his girlfriend, Bianca Carmada. He is charged with battery on a law enforcement officer and resisting arrest with violence, both felonies, according to Kathryn Hetrz, a processing officer at the Leon County Jail. Carmada was being arrested on a warrant for failure to appear stemming from a prior charge of criminal mischief. Wilder bonded out earlier today, while Carmada is still in custody.
Sources tell Tomahawk Nation that Wilder allegedly grabbed his girlfriend away from the deputy as he was trying to arrest her and then allegedly slapped the deputy's hand. The deputy was unharmed.
Here is the press release from the Leon County Sherriff's Office, which describes a similar scene, though says Wilder "pushed" the officer, rather than "slapped", as told to Tomahawk Nation:
On February 22, 2012, a Leon County Deputy responded to 415 Chapel Drive #419 in reference to arresting Bianca N. Camarda, 20, on an outstanding capias for failure to appear in court on a Criminal Mischief charge. The uniformed Deputy made contact with James C. Wilder, 19. Wilder allowed deputies into the apartment in order to search for Camarda. Camarda was located hiding in a bathroom and taken into custody without incident. After placing Camarda in handcuffs, Deputy Donnie Bramblett began escorting her to his marked patrol car.
Wilder then began telling the deputy that Camarda was not going to go to jail. Wilder stepped in between Deputy Bramblett and Camarda and then pushed him. The deputy was able to regain control of the situation by unholstering his taser and advising Wilder that he would be tased if he continued to interfere. Wilder then began yelling obscenities while continuing to say that Camarda was not going to jail. As soon as Camarda was placed in the patrol car, Wilder was placed under arrest without further incident. Wilder and Camarda were taken to the Leon County Jail.
It is interesting to note that officer Hertz, Wilder's own attorney, the Tallahassee Democrat, as well as the original arrest report, list the charge as "resisting officer with violence." The release says obstructing a law enforcement officer without violence. Clearly, one of the reports are incorrect.
Wilder's side of the story, as told to the Tallahassee Democrat by his attorney, is that he never touched the officer and was attempting to show him a text message between his girlfriend and her attorney.
Wilder played sparingly as a freshman as he attempted to learn the playbook and become acclimated to the system.
Florida State's policy is typically to suspend those charged with a felony until the case has been resolved. And out of fairness to both players and law enforcement, head coach Jimbo Fisher usually lets the legal process play out before rushing to judgment on criminal matters.
Sources tell Tomahawk Nation that Wilder does not have a prior criminal record. That should be in his favor in his attempt to get the charges reduced.