COVINGTON, Ky. - Former Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Jerome Simpson walked into the Kenton County Jail off Madison Pike in South Covington Thursday evening after being sentenced Thursday to 15 days in jail on a drug-related charge after two and a half pounds of marijuana was shipped to his home from California in September of last year.
At his sentencing hearing, Simpson took the stand in his defense.
"First I want to apologize to my family, to my community and to the youth that look up to me, the Bengals organization, the Commonwealth and my teammates," Simpson said. "I take full responsibility for my actions. I made a poor decision and I've learned a very, very important lesson going through this and I look forward to helping people and speaking about this mistake that I made here and not making the same mistake.
He also said that because of this experience he is a better person. Simpson pleaded guilty to the charge in March. He arrived at the jail parking lot in a Cadillac Escalade, accompanied by two friends who walked into the jail intake foyer with him.
Simpson had no additional comment for the reporters waiting to talk to him outside the jail, other than to say, 'Thank you' when the door was held open for him.
In addition to the 15 days in jail, the plea deal includes Simpson paying $7,500 in court fees and 200 hours of community service in addition to the 50 he has already been sentenced to, but the judge will allow Simpson to donate $5,000 of those fees to charity, pending court approval.
Simpson will now see how his football career will be impacted. Simpson is a free-agent after completing four NFL seasons with the Bengals.
Coach Marvin Lewis recently said the Bengals are open to offering Simpson another contract even though he is headed to jail and faces a suspension from the NFL for violating its substance abuse policy.
Lewis told reporters at the NFL's owners meetings that it's possible the club could offer the receiver another contract.
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