Barkevious Mingo, an eight-year N.F.L. veteran, was arrested in Arlington, Texas, on Thursday night and charged with indecency involving sexual contact with a minor, a felony.
On the advice of his lawyer, Mingo turned himself in to the police and was released after paying a $25,000 bond. The police did not release any additional information because of the age of the victim and the nature of the allegation, which was said to have taken place in 2019.
Lukas Garcia, Mingo’s lawyer, called the allegations “completely baseless,” adding: “Mingo is the victim of a false claim, and we believe this is motivated by money or some other ulterior motive. We are confident when the truth comes to light, my client will be fully exonerated.”
On Saturday night, the Falcons said they were aware of the allegations against Mingo and were gathering more information on the incident. Several hours later, the team announced that it had released Mingo but did not specify what prompted the decision.
Mingo’s release, though, came just hours after Sports Illustrated published details of the allegations contained in a search warrant issued to the Arlington Police Department.
According to the warrant, the alleged incident took place over the Fourth of July weekend in 2019 when Mingo was said to have invited a teenage family member and his male friend, another teenager, to visit the Six Flags Over Texas amusement park in Arlington and K1 Speed, a go-kart complex. They ate dinner at a steakhouse and Mingo paid for everything. Mingo also bought the boys sports gear that they had chosen on Nike.com.
On the night of July 4, the boys returned to a local hotel where Mingo was staying. The warrant states that Mingo made sexual advances at the boy while he was sleeping. Mingo then became more aggressive, trying to remove the boy’s underwear and having intercourse with him.
The boy’s mother filed a complaint to the police in January 2021, and the case was assigned to a detective with the Arlington Police Department Crimes Against Children Unit. The police obtained a warrant in February 2021, and obtained Nike sales records from July 4, 2019.
According to the application for the search warrant, the police sought evidence to corroborate the victim’s statements: “Furthermore it is known to [the detective] … that purchasing gifts for children is a known ‘grooming’ behavior in Child Sexual Abuse cases.”
Mingo had signed a one-year deal with the Falcons in March. Drafted sixth overall by the Cleveland Browns in 2013, Mingo had also played with the New England Patriots, Indianapolis Colts, Seattle Seahawks, Houston Texans and Chicago Bears.
Mingo, 30, was born in Florida and played college football at L.S.U.
Alyssa Lukpat contributed reporting.