UCLA recruit Soso Jamabo arrested for fleeing police

ByJeremy Crabtree ESPN logo
Monday, April 20, 2015

Soso Jamabo, the 28th-ranked player in the ESPN 300 and the second-best player in UCLA's highly regarded 2015 football signing class, was arrested early Sunday on charges of fleeing police in a vehicle and drinking alcohol, according to the Kaufman (Texas) County Sheriff's Office.

Jamabo, whose legal name is Sotonye Josiah Jamabo, was booked into the Kaufman County Jail at 1:28 a.m., online records show. He was arrested in Kemp, Texas, which is about 40 miles southwest of Dallas.

The online records showed that Jamabo was charged with evading arrest with a vehicle. Earlier Sunday, those records had listed several other charges, including disregarding a stop sign, minor consumption of alcohol, minor in possession of alcohol, driving without possessing a driver's license and speeding, but those charges were no longer listed by the afternoon.

Jamabo posted $7,500 bond at about 4:30 p.m. Sunday.

UCLA associate athletic director Josh Rupprecht said the Bruins were monitoring Jamabo's situation.

"We are obviously concerned about these reports and are currently gathering more information," Rupprecht said. "As this is a continuing process, we will withhold further comment until the appropriate time."

Kemp Police Chief Robert Walker told the Dallas Morning News that at about 7:20 p.m. Saturday night, a truck driven by Jamabo got off Texas State Highway 175 at a high rate of speed. When an officer tried to pull the truck over, Jamabo sped through a stop sign and turned onto State Highway 274.

Walker said the truck then was seen swerving in the turn lane past other vehicles, and the occupants also threw objects out of the window. Eventually the truck stopped and the passengers -- an unidentified 19-year-old male, an 18-year-old female and a juvenile -- were detained and given citations for being minors in possession of alcohol and minor in consumption of alcohol. Jamabo, the driver, was arrested and booked into the Kaufman County Jail.

A senior from Plano (Texas) West High School, Jamabo announced on ESPNU's national signing day coverage in February that he was picking UCLA over Notre Dame, Texas and Texas A&M. Jamabo rushed for 2,279 yards and 44 touchdowns as a senior and was the fourth overall recruit in Texas. His signing was a big part of UCLA's climb to the nation's 11th-best recruiting class, and Bruins coach Jim Mora said on signing day that there was a good chance Jamabo would see early action once he arrived on campus.

Jamabo was also in the headlines leading up to signing day when his joke about picking between University of Phoenix and ITT Tech went viral.

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