Former NFL Quarterback Ryan Leaf Out on Bail Following Palm Desert Arrest

Former NFL Quarterback Ryan Leaf Out on Bail Following Palm Desert Arrest

Taylor Martinez

PALM DESERT (CNS) – A late September court date is scheduled for ex- NFL quarterback Ryan Leaf, who was arrested in Palm Desert on suspicion of misdemeanor domestic battery at the beginning of Memorial Day weekend.

Leaf, 44, was taken into custody about 2 p.m. Friday on Grapevine Street in Palm Desert, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department. The exact location was not released.

Leaf was booked on suspicion of domestic battery at the Larry D. Smith Correctional Facility in Banning and posted $5,000 bail later that evening, jail records show.

Leaf is scheduled to appear in court at the Larson Justice Center in Indio on Sept. 25, but whether and when charges might be filed is unknown.

Legal problems for the former NFL quarterback began when he was indicted on burglary and controlled substance charges in Texas in 2009. Leaf pleaded guilty in 2010 to seven counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud and one count of delivery of a simulated controlled substance, all felonies, and was sentenced to 10 years probation and fined $20,000.

Leaf was sentenced in September 2014 to five years in a Texas prison for violating parole from a 2012 drug possession case, but prosecutors allowed him to use time served in Montana to fulfill the sentence and he was released in early December 2014.

After getting out of prison, Leaf began working to assist addicts and alcoholics stay sober as a program ambasssador for the Los Angeles-based Transcend Recovery Community.

In 2019, Leaf joined ESPN as a college football analyst after being a studio and game analyst for the Pac-12 Network.

Leaf was the second selection in the 1998 NFL draft behind Peyton Manning. The NFL Network documentary series, “NFL Top 10,” ranked him as the No. 1 draft bust of all time.

Leaf played for the San Diego Chargers in the 1998 and 2000 seasons, missing the 1999 season because of a shoulder injury, but the Chargers released him following the 2000 season. He spent the 2001 preseason with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but was released before the start of the season.

Leaf played four games with the Dallas Cowboys in 2001, starting three, all losses, and was released, ending his playing career.