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Former Jets Player Pleads Guilty

October 27, 1999

LONG BEACH, N.Y. (AP) _ Cincinnati Bengals guard Matt O’Dwyer pleaded guilty Tuesday to disorderly conduct and third-degree assault in connection with a July bar brawl.

``He just wanted to get it behind him so he can focus on football,″ his lawyer, Stephen Scaring, said.

O’Dwyer, who used to play for the New York Jets, originally was charged with assaulting police officers, harassment and disorderly conduct.

``He was trying to avoid the negative impact it was beginning to have on the team and to take advantage of the reduced charges,″ Scaring said of O’Dwyer’s guilty plea.

O’Dwyer will be sentenced Dec. 21 by Long Beach City Court Judge Roy Tepper. The judge has told O’Dwyer he will not serve time in jail, Nassau County District Attorney Frank Schroeder said.

O’Dwyer could be fined or ordered to perform community service.

John Elliott and Jason Fabini of the Jets, and O’Dwyer were drinking at Bogart’s Bar and Restaurant in Long Beach one night when they began acting up, police said.

Elliott, a tackle, triggered the brawl by urinating in a sink in the women’s bathroom in the bar, then punching two patrons, police said. He was charged with misdemeanor assault, harassment and public lewdness. He faces up to a year in jail and fines.

O’Dwyer kicked out the window of a police car, sending shattered glass onto two officers, police said.

Fabini, a tackle, was charged with disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor, and faces a maximum sentence of 15 days in jail and a fine.

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