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Questions swirl a day after JSO raids Telvin Smith’s home

JSO towed an SUV owned by the former Jacksonville Jaguars player Wednesday

JSO towed an SUV owned by the former Jacksonville Jaguars player Wednesday

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Heavy police activity at the home of a former Jacksonville Jaguars star Wednesday is getting national attention.

Jacksonville police swarmed the home of Telvin Smith, the 28-year-old former linebacker who unexpectedly stepped away from the team in the offseason after five years on the roster.

It started around 4 p.m. at his home on Shipwatch Drive in the Queens Harbour neighborhood near Atlantic Boulevard and Hodges Boulevard.

So far, investigators with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office have not commented about why they were there. However, News4Jax’s helicopter, Sky 4, recorded video of JSO towing his SUV and searching for evidence.

The sight of a tow truck removing a 2018 Black Cadillac Escalade registered to Smith turned heads in the gated upscale gated community. The Sky4 helicopter followed the SUV to the JSO impound lot on Haines Street, where vehicles taken for evidence are often processed and stored.

Detectives spent hours at Smith’s $1.5 million mansion, surrounding it with patrol cars, unmarked cars and a crime scene unit. Sources told News4Jax they were serving a search warrant.

Neighbors said they saw a man who looked like Smith being taken away in handcuffs, but a search of court records did not show an arrest or any criminal charges against him as of Thursday afternoon.

News4Jax spoke with the woman who said she raised Smith. She said she didn’t want to make any statements and the family is requesting privacy. She added that Telvin is OK.

Telvin Smith photo: AP Images

Before the raid Wednesday afternoon, Smith posted a cryptic message on his Instagram page:

“I got caught up in tryna make stuff happen according to expectations that pple hold me to…I must learn & then act. Love y’all. Continue to support & watch.”

His account, which has more than 80,000 followers, was made private after the incident.

Records from Lowndes County, Ga., where he’s from, show he’s tied up in a custody battle involving his 3 and 5-year-old children. Their mother accused him of not paying child support.

He asked a judge to see his kids and requested to change his contribution because he’s “currently unemployed.”

The mother of another child has accused him of contempt of court. That hearing is scheduled for Tuesday in Valdosta. A court document accuses Smith of failing to pay tuition and mandatory expenses.

Smith went on hiatus from the Jaguars last May, forgoing an approximately $9 million salary.

The fifth-round draft pick out of Florida State, and one of the best in Jaguars history, played in 76 career games and made 586 tackles and nine interceptions. The team placed Smith on the reserve/retired list when training camp began in July, according to NFL.com.

Smith was visibly shaken after his brother, 25-year-old Brian Moore, was shot and killed in Valdosta on Nov. 13, 2016. He left the team briefly to spend time with family after the homicide but returned a week later.

Emory Carter Jr. was charged with the murder, according to Valdosta police. Two others were charged as accomplices.

Wednesday, before the raid, Jaguars head of football operations Tom Coughlin said he had no idea what Smith’s future was with the team.

“I’ve heard nothing,” Coughlin said at a press conference, after being asked about Smith.

A spokesman for the Jaguars, Tad Dickman, said he would not comment because Smith is not on the active roster.

News4Jax also reached out to Smith’s agent for comment. He hasn’t responded.

About the Author:

Lifetime Jacksonville resident anchors the 8 and 9 a.m. weekday newscasts and is part of the News4Jax I-Team.