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By HOWARD ALTMAN
The Tampa Tribune
TAMPA - A Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ running back was arrested early this morning after kicking a pregnant woman’s door in, destroying her property, hitting her in the face and pushing her into a wall after arguing about whether he is the father of the woman’s unborn child, according to an arrest report filed by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.
Lionel Theron Gates, 25, was charged with assault on a pregnant woman, burglary of an occupied dwelling, and criminal mischief of $1,000 or more – all felonies. Deputies say Gates broke into the woman’s apartment 11:30 p.m. Thursday.
Gates, a running back, was signed to the Bucs’ practice squad in December. He was arrested at 12:50 a.m. at 6203 Savannah Breeze Court in Tampa, according to jail records. An arrest affidavit filed by deputies lists that complex as his home address as well.
Gates is being held at the Orient Road Jail without bond, according to jail records.
A call to his attorney, Ken Sarnoff, was not immediately returned.
‘‘Charges such as those facing Lionel Gates are taken seriously by the Buccaneers organization,’’ the team said in a statement today. ‘‘We plan to meet with Lionel as soon as possible after which we will deal with this matter appropriately.’‘
Gates, a Jacksonville native, played college football at Louisville and was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in 2005.
Stay with TBO.com for developments.
Information from TBO.com wire services was used in this report.