DALLAS » Former Dallas defensive end Greg Hardy, who remains unsigned after a tumultuous 2015 season revolving around his domestic violence case in North Carolina, was arrested on a cocaine possession charge in Texas.
Hardy was booked early today and later released on $5,000 bond in the Dallas suburb of Richardson on a charge of possession of a controlled substance of less than one gram, jail spokesman Tim Weed said.
The 28-year-old Hardy signed with Dallas as a free agent last year after Carolina decided not to bring him back as a result of the domestic violence case.
Hardy was suspended for the first four games last season over the domestic incident, and his production with the Cowboys dropped off considerably after photos of bruised ex-girlfriend Nicole Holder were posted by Deadspin.
The 2013 Pro Bowl player was pulled over late Sunday night for failure to signal a left turn, and a search of his vehicle revealed the cocaine and an item containing marijuana remnants, according to police documents.
The former player told police he didn’t know what was in a bag that police said contained cocaine, and Hardy said somebody gave him the bag at a party the previous night.
Police said a substance that tested positive for cocaine was found in his wallet, but Hardy said he had been passing around his wallet at the party “because he was paying for everybody and that must have been when the baggie was put in his wallet,” according to the police report.
Hardy’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, declined to comment. The NFL didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
The police report also made reference to a couple of gun club membership cards in Hardy’s wallet. When the NFL suspended Hardy for 10 games over his domestic case, the league cited the presence of guns in his apartment in the ruling. An arbitrator reduced the ban to four games.
Hardy was convicted by a judge in the North Carolina case, but prosecutors dropped the case during his appeal because Holder couldn’t be located to testify. Prosecutors said they believed Hardy had reached a settlement with Holder over the incident.
Despite strong criticism for signing Hardy, Dallas owner Jerry Jones said early last season that he wanted to give the pass rusher a long-term contract.
But after several missteps by Hardy and his late-season decline, Jones said during the NFL draft that the Cowboys wouldn’t pursue another deal with him, even though they would be missing starters DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory on season-opening suspensions for substance abuse.