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Archive for Thursday, March 14, 2002

Ex-slugger sent to jail because of behavior problems

March 14, 2002

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— Darryl Strawberry was kicked out of a drug-treatment center and sent to jail for repeatedly breaking program rules, including a ban on sex between residents, according to court documents released Wednesday.

The former baseball star had many behavior problems at Phoenix House near Ocala, a state Corrections Department report said. Strawberry told his probation officer Tuesday he had sex with a female resident three days earlier.

In an interview at the Marion County Jail, Strawberry told WKMG-TV in Orlando his addictive behavior lead to the affair, which he now fears will cost him his marriage. Dressed in an orange-striped jail uniform, he said he never thought the punishment from the program would be as severe as being kicked out.

"Of course we know we're not supposed to interact with the sisters in any kind of sexual way but ... it happened," he told the CBS affiliate. "I've done some serious damage to my marriage through addiction and at this point it looks like it's going to cost me my marriage."

Strawberry said he is proud he has not used drugs in 10 months and stayed in the program. He had left previous residential treatment programs in Tampa.

"This is the first time I'm coming out of a treatment program where I know in my heart that I don't want to use drugs," he said.

Strawberry was transferred to Marion County Jail on Tuesday, his 40th birthday. He appeared briefly before a judge Wednesday to be advised of the charge against him.

Strawberry will be returned to Tampa to face Judge Florence Foster on April 1. Foster repeatedly has ordered him to undergo drug treatment rather than send him to prison for violating probation.

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