Jalen Carter's Court Date On Racing Charge Pre-Fatal Crash Is April 18; NFL Draft April 27

Former Georgia football superstar Jalen Carter will have a chance to clear his name before the April 27 NFL Draft for which he has been projected as a top five pick, and possibly the overall No. 1 selection.

Carter, 21, turned himself into authorities at Athens-Clarke County Jail late Wednesday after Athens Police issued warrants for his arrest on misdemeanor charges of reckless driving and racing on Jan. 15 in Athens. He allegedly was racing with Georgia recruiting staffer Chandler LeCroy at extremely high speeds shortly before LeCroy crashed and later died.

Georgia offensive lineman Devin Willock was in LeCroy's vehicle and died at the scene. Two others were injured. Carter left the scene and originally lied to police about his whereabouts.

An Atlanta Journal Constitution story on Wednesday morning put Carter at the scene and precipitated the arrest warrants for Carter. He was in Indianapolis for the NFL Scouting Combine at the time and returned to Athens.

Jalen Carter Booked Into Jail On Wednesday Night

Carter was booked into jail at 11:33 p.m. Wednesday and released 16 minutes later on $4,000 bond - $2,500 for racing and $1,500 for reckless driving. Arrest documents say he is scheduled to appear in Athens-Clarke County Municipal Court at 9 a.m. on April 18.

The first round of the NFL Draft is on April 27 in Kansas City.

If he is not the first pick of the draft, Carter is expected to be the first defensive tackle taken. He led one of the nation's best defenses in the 2022 and '21 seasons as Georgia won back-to-back national championships.

Georgia Celebrated National Title On Jan. 14-15 In Athens

Georgia players and various staff members were celebrating the national title they won on Jan. 9 in Athens on Jan. 14 with an afternoon parade in downtown Athens and a ceremony at Sanford Stadium before the tragedy. Celebrations continued throughout the evening and night.

Jalen Carter Insists He Is Completely Innocent

"There is no question in my mind that when all of the facts are known that I will be fully exonerated of any criminal wrongdoing," Carter said on this Twitter Wednesday afternoon. "Numerous media reports have circulated containing inaccurate information concerning the tragic events of January 15."

Carter said he wants "to make certain that the complete and accurate truth is presented."

Carter did a wise thing by turning himself in. In 2015, projected first round pick offensive lineman La'el Collins of LSU did not return to Baton Rouge for questioning by authorities concerning a murder until after the draft. He fell completely out of the draft.

Written by
Guilbeau joined OutKick as an SEC columnist in September of 2021 after covering LSU and the Saints for 17 years at USA TODAY Louisiana. He has been a national columnist/feature writer since the summer of 2022, covering college football, basketball and baseball with some NFL, NBA, MLB, TV and Movies and general assignment, including hot dog taste tests. A New Orleans native and Mizzou graduate, he has consistently won Associated Press Sports Editors (APSE) and Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) awards since covering Alabama and Auburn at the Mobile Press-Register (1993-98) and LSU and the Saints at the Baton Rouge Advocate (1998-2004). In 2021, Guilbeau won an FWAA 1st for a game feature, placed in APSE Beat Writing, Breaking News and Explanatory, and won Beat Writer of the Year from the Louisiana Sports Writers Association (LSWA). He won an FWAA columnist 1st in 2017 and was FWAA's top overall winner in 2016 with 1st in game story, 2nd in columns, and features honorable mention. Guilbeau completed a book in 2022 about LSU's five-time national champion coach - "Everything Matters In Baseball: The Skip Bertman Story" - that is available at www.acadianhouse.com, Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble outlets. He lives in Baton Rouge with his wife, the former Michelle Millhollon of Thibodaux who previously covered politics for the Baton Rouge Advocate and is a communications director.