DENVER - Denver Broncos safety T.J. Ward was with Broncos defensive tackle Terrance Knighton when Ward allegedly threw a glass and hit a Denver strip club bartender earlier this month, court records say.
Ward turned himself into Denver police Friday on an arrest warrant for misdemeanor assault and disturbing the peace. He went to court, was issued a summons and the warrant for his arrest was dismissed, according to Denver police. Ward is scheduled to return to court on June 23.
Signed by the Broncos as a free agent in March, Ward ran into trouble about 2:30 a.m. on May 10 at PT's All Nude Centerfold Show Club, at 3480 S. Galena St.
Club employees told police that former Broncos cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie was with Ward and Knighton at the club.
However, Knighton tweeted 7NEWS reporter Marshall Zelinger Friday that "DRC wasn't there. Bad source sorry." Rodgers-Cromartie signed as free agent with the New York Giants in March.
@7Marshall ummmm DRC wasn't there. Bad source sorry— Terrance Knighton (@MrKnighton2u) May 23, 2014
Ward had asked the female bartender for $200 in $1 bills and the other two men also asked for change, according to the bartender's statement to police.
The bartender noticed Ward had a glass bottle with him, and she told him that he needed to throw the bottle away or take it to his car because outside food or drinks are not permitted in the club, according to a police Statement of Probable Cause supporting the arrest warrant.
Ward told the bartender that a club security staffer at the door said he could bring the bottle in, the bartender wrote in a statement. She told the security staffer to tell Ward to take the bottle outside.
About 10 minutes later, Ward came to the bar with a can of Red Bull he bought from a waitress and asked the bartender for a cup of ice. The bartender gave him a glass mug of ice.
Then the bartender looked up and saw Ward was pouring from the banned bottle into the mug of ice, according to her statement.
The bartender said she grabbed the handle of the mug and Ward tried to hang onto it and some of the liquid sloshed onto her. She finally got the mug away from Ward and dumped it in the sink.
The bartender wrote that as she turned to help another customer, Ward threw the "bottle," striking her in the wrist. She said the bottle also hit glasses on a shelf, breaking one glass.
A police detective wrote in the probable cause statement that a club surveillance video showed the bartender take a glass away from Ward and "he picks up a glass mug that is sitting on the bar and tosses/throws the glass mug at [the bartender]."
The detective wrote that the events in the video "were consistent with what [the bartender] had reported."
The bartender ran to the door for a security staffer, who came with her and found Ward sitting with some women on a couch. Ward told the security staffer "he had been sitting there the whole time," according to the bartender's statement.
A security staffer wrote in a statement that he asked Ward what happened and the player told him he had dropped a glass at the bar. Another customer said Ward threw the glass, the security staffer stated.
The security staffer asked Ward, Knighton and the third man to leave the club and they did.
Although the bartender didn't recognize Ward, she told officers that other club employees did.
The bartender had no visible injuries but told police her wrist was sore.
The Denver Broncos responded to the news that a warrant had been issued for Ward with this statement: "We have been aware of this issue and will continue to review all of the facts."
Ward, who previously played for the Cleveland Browns, agreed to a $23 million ($14 million guaranteed) deal with the Broncos during the opening hours of this year's free agency period in March. At the time, VP and GM of Football Operations John Elway said he believed Ward would bring "energy and toughness to our secondary."