Former NFL lineman faced sex abuse charges

Published 1:36 am Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Associated Press


A former NFL lineman who committed suicide at an Oregon wildlife refuge was facing criminal charges that he sexually abused three children under the age of 14, authorities said Tuesday.

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Court records obtained by The Associated Press show Michael Wayne Current, 66, was scheduled to enter pleas Tuesday in Marion County Circuit Court in Salem, Ore., on five counts of first-degree sexual abuse and one count of luring a minor.

Marion County Deputy District Attorney Will Lathrop said the charges involved three victims, all under the age of 14, and that the incidents occurred between 2004 and 2010.

Court records listed two girls and one boy as victims.

On Sunday, a woman friend of Current bought the bolt-action 20-gauge shotgun he used to kill himself and drove him from Portland, Ore., to the Spirit Mountain Casino in Grande Ronde, where they spent the day, said Polk County sheriff’s Sgt. Michael Holsapple.

The woman stopped answering questions before investigators could determine her relationship with Current, or whether she drove him to the wildlife refuge where he shot himself in the head at a viewing area, Holsapple said.

He played left tackle at Ohio State and was a co-captain his senior year under coach Woody Hayes.

He was drafted in the 3rd round of the 1967 AFL/ NFL draft by the Denver Broncos. He also played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Miami Dolphins.