Iowa Football Player to Plead Guilty in Assault Case

Iowa's Adrian Clayborn (94) and Head Coach Kirk Ferentz talk with UI President Sally Mason following their Orange Bowl victory over Georgia Tech Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2010 at Land Shark Stadium in Miami, FL. (Brian Ray/The Gazette)

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By Becky Ogann

IOWA CITY - It appears Iowa football player Adrian Clayborn will plead guilty in the assault case against him.

A hearing has been set for March 19 for Clayborn to enter a guilty plea and for the disposition of the case, which in criminal cases typically means the sentencing, according to court records filed on Wednesday.

Clayborn, 21, was charged with assault causing bodily injury after he allegedly punched a taxicab driver in January 2009.

The charge is a serious misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a $1,875 fine.

It is not known whether Clayborn will be pleading to assault causing injury or a lesser charge.

The prosecutor was out of the office and unavailable for comment today.

Clayborn’s attorney, Matthew Petrzelka, declined to comment this afternoon.

Clayborn’s trial had been set for March 1. He had a pretrial hearing this morning in Johnson County District Court.

Clayborn was not there and Petrzelka went into the judge’s chamber to talk about the case, as is common in such hearings, and when he exited he said “nothing” happened. When asked if the case would go to trial, he said he did not know.

Phil Haddy, the University of Iowa’s sports information director, said he had no information about the apparent guilty plea and declined to comment.

Clayborn was an all-Big Ten defensive end as a junior last fall. He was considered a candidate to leave early for the NFL but chose to return to Iowa for his senior year.

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