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San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver was arrested Friday morning in San Jose following a hit-and-run incident with a bicyclist, according to the San Jose Police Department.
Culliver, 25, was arrested on charges of felony hit-and-run, felony reckless driving with injury and felony weapons possession. Culliver was also carrying a suspended driver's license.
According to police, Culliver struck a bicyclist with his white Ford Mustang while crossing an intersection and attempted to flee the scene. When confronted by an eyewitness, who blocked the road and blocked an escape route, Culliver reportedly threatened the eyewitness with brass knuckles before getting back into his car and driving away, striking the eyewitness' bicycle in the process.
When police arrived, officers took Culliver into custody without incident. The 49ers cornerback was booked into Santa Clara County jail and and was released shortly after 5 p.m. after posting $36,000 bail.
According to police, the bicyclist was treated and released at the scene with minor injuries.
Trent Baalke, the 49ers general manager, released the following statement:
“The 49ers organization is aware of the recent matter involving Chris Culliver. We will remain in contact with Chris and the local authorities as we continue to gather the facts regarding this situation. As this is an ongoing legal matter, we will reserve further comment at this time.”
Culliver has three interceptions in 32 games, and started six games over two seasons with the 49ers. He was expected to compete for a starting cornerback job last year before sustaining a torn ACL that forced him to miss the entire 2013 season.
Culliver was in the national spotlight prior to the 49ers' Super Bowl XLVII appearance when he made anti-gay comments on a radio show during Media Day.
After Culliver’s homophobic remarks caused a national furor, the cornerback apologized profusely and promised to “learn and grow” from the experience. Since then, he has worked with LGBT outreach groups such as “The Trevor Project,” an organization that provides crisis counseling and suicide intervention for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth.
Culliver told The San Francisco Bay Times earlier this month he hoped to work on a project with Michael Sam, the former University of Missouri defensive end who is looking to become the NFL’s first openly gay player. Culliver also praised Nets center Jason Collins for his courage after becoming the NBA’s first openly gay player in February.
"I applaud Michael and Jason for their courage," Culliver told the Bay Times, which is the oldest LGBT-owned and funded newspaper in the Bay Area. "I have absolutely no problem playing and interacting with someone from the LGBT community and look forward to connecting with Michael soon on some projects."
Culliver also has been active in promoting animal welfare, and received a “Champion of Compassion” award earlier this month from Critter Lovers at Work (CLAW), a volunteer group that works with the San Francisco SPCA. He’s also scheduled to play host to the ABKC Dog Show on April 5 at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds, an event benefiting his “Chris Culliver Foundation,” an organization “helping inner city youth and promoting the welfare of animals.”