Details remained sparse Sunday afternoon and the future uncertain for A’s catcher Bruce Maxwell, who was arrested the night before in Arizona for allegedly pointing a gun at a female food delivery driver.
Maxwell was transferred from the Scottsdale city jail to Maricopa County jail Sunday morning, a Scottsdale Police Department spokesperson said, after being arrested on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and disorderly conduct. It wasn’t immediately known when Maxwell might make his initial court appearance.
The woman making the allegation claimed Maxwell pointed a gun at her Saturday night, and Maxwell was taken into custody at his Scottsdale home at roughly 6 p.m. that night.
After drawing attention as the first major league player to kneel during the national anthem to protest racial injustice, Maxwell’s offseason has gotten off to a very turbulent start. Earlier this week, he told TMZ Sports that he and two friends were refused service at an Alabama restaurant because of a waiter’s disapproval with his decision to kneel. That drew a direct denial from restaurant employees, leaving it unclear whose version of the story is the truth.
But his weekend arrest is much more serious, and how the legal process unfolds obviously could impact not only his baseball future but his life in general. In Arizona, any assault with a deadly weapon charge is considered “aggravated” and listed a Class 3 felony, with Class 1 the most serious on a scale of 1-6.
Penalties for a Class 3 felony in the state can include anywhere from five to 15 years in prison plus a fine up to $150,000, though a number of factors are taken into consideration that could reduce sentencing, including whether the defendant has any prior criminal history. Right now, it’s not even clear if the charges will be carried forth against Maxwell toward a potential trial, and if so, whether he could plea bargain to lesser charges.
Maxwell’s agent, Matt Sosnick, declined any comment when contacted Sunday afternoon.
Aside from his legal issues, it stands to reason that Maxwell could face separate punishment from Major League Baseball over his arrest.
At the very least, this latest incident will reflect poorly on Maxwell’s reputation. That’s unfortunate for the 26-year-old catcher in that — regardless of where people stood on his polarizing decision to kneel during the anthem — he seemed to win respect from A’s teammates and many around baseball for his intelligent, genuine explanation for why he chose to kneel in the first place.
Maxwell joined A’s president Dave Kaval and manager Bob Melvin for a trip to Santa Rosa recently to bring gifts to a young boy who lost all of his baseball memorabilia in the North Bay wildfires. Afterward, Maxwell tweeted about how impactful it was for him personally to visit with fire victims.
After the regular season wrapped up, A’s executive VP of baseball operations Billy Beane praised Maxwell’s on-field performance in 2017 and said the rookie set up nicely as Oakland’s primary catcher looking ahead to 2018. But again, how things unfold from a legal standpoint likely will impact his status with the A’s.
“We were disappointed to learn of the allegations,” the A’s said in a press release Sunday. “We take this situation and ongoing investigation seriously. We are gathering information from the proper authorities and do not have further comment at this time.”