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Posted on Mon, Aug 13, 2012 : 6:04 p.m.

Suspended Michigan RB Fitz Toussaint due in court 4 days before opener against Alabama

By Kyle Meinke

Michigan tailback Fitz Toussaint has been issued his first court date following an offseason drunken-driving arrest -- and it comes four days before the Wolverines' highly acclaimed season opener against Alabama.

Toussaint will face one count of operating a vehicle while intoxicated, according to police, and is scheduled to be arraigned in 14A-4 District Court on Aug. 28. Police say he will not face a weapons charge, despite finding a pellet gun designed to look like a handgun near the driver's seat of his truck.

Michigan opens its season Sept. 1 against the defending national champion Crimson Tide. Coach Brady Hoke has yet to determine whether Toussaint, his starting tailback, will play in that game.


Fitz Toussaint

Toussaint missed the first week of practices before joining camp Monday. He remains indefinitely suspended.

The 22-year-old Toussaint was stopped July 21 after running a red light at South Forest and Washtenaw avenues in his white Ford F-150 pickup truck. He registered a .12 blood-alcohol level and was jailed by Saline police, who were in the area on a drunken driving detail.

Toussaint was released at 4 a.m., according to police records.

"He was extremely cooperative and gave us no problems at all," Saline Police Department Det. Don Lupi said Monday. "He was even more pleasant than the average drunk-driving arrestee. He was friendly and easy to deal with, unlike a lot of arrest situations."

Police also found a black Smith & Wesson airsoft pellet gun on the floor in front of the driver's seat during the arrest, according to police records. It was designed to look like a semi-automatic handgun.

Toussaint will not face charges for the "look-a-like," Lupi said.

"He was not charged with anything pertaining to that pellet gun, nor do we think he did anything illegal with it," Lupi said.

Kyle Meinke covers Michigan football for He can be reached at 734-623-2588, by email at and followed on Twitter @kmeinke.



Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 4:27 p.m.

If he doesn't play, he doesn't play. Not the end of the world. From what I have been reading Thomas Rawls has been tearing it up in practice this off-season. So, Michigan still has the thunder and lightning combo of Vincent Smith and Thomas Rawls.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:55 p.m.

when will the arrest video be posted? I know that has been standard practice in the past to submit through the foia act to get these types of videos. That video would be very interesting, and big part of this story. When the FIOA request gets grant please post asap. Thank you! Or in this case did someone feel that wasn't needed? Hmmm it should be interesting to see how and mlive handle this case compared to how they have covered previous college athlete arrests.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:19 p.m.

Hmm... A drunk driver in an F-150 killed my in-laws, can I go to this hearing to press for the maximum penalty? Any Michigan fans care if I do that? Coach Hoke is that ok with you? It would fit in with the zero tolerance policy, right? Of course, in my case it was the drivers fourth DUI offense, some people never learn. What would it take for Mr. Toussaint to learn from this first time? Because whatever that is, that is what needs to be done.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:22 p.m.

This is the first time I've heard about the pellet gun. That's pretty suspicious if you ask me. While it may have nothing to do with the DUI, who has something like that, especially in the car with them?


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:42 p.m.

Guys, I know what a pellet gun is. My question is who has one painted to look like a real gun? And on top of that - who then takes said fake gun painted to look real with them in the car?


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:24 p.m.

a ton of young college kids, that's who. And probably other people, but from my experience, a ton of young college kids around 20 years old have them.

Robert Granville

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:50 p.m.

I have before. They're children's toys. No one could mistake one for the real thing, unless they have never seen the real thing.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 6:08 a.m.

Oh my, this is a lot worse than originally thought.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:32 a.m.

I see this as a crossroad for UM football... do the right thing or.... do whatever it takes to win. TBD


Wed, Aug 15, 2012 : 6:44 p.m.

As I have said elsewhere we are still dealing with accusations not convictions. Until both cases are presented and tried both Clark and Fitz deserve the presumption of innocence. Since Fitz's guilt will likely rest on the procedural and administration of the test and the technical validation of the accuracy of the test his case is more black and white. Further it seems reasonable to presume that he has already told Hoke how much he had to drink over what period of time. Clark's case, on the other hand, is subject to a far broader gray area and we all should wait until witnesses and details are fully vetted by a trial. Given attorney client privilege it is possible that Clark has not told Hoke his version of what happened. It is hard to see what would justify playing Clark while his guilt or innocence is unresolved. Fitz's case may be resolved at his upcoming hearing at which point we'll have more information on which to assess Hoke's actions.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:53 p.m.

Mohawk, I believe that was Stonum's third DUI. If it wasn't a DUI he had been in trouble 2 times prior to the last DUI which got him kicked off the team.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:20 p.m.

nonsense -- Hoke kicked our best wide-out off the team after his second offense because he failed to learn his lesson --- they must be given a chance to learn from their mistakes...stonum did not....maybe toussaint are in no position to say the program is at a crossroads.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:27 p.m.

I'm not sure there is a right or wrong thing to do in this case. Suspensions are very subjective - there's already a court of law that hands out a punishment for committing a crime. So what is right/wrong when it comes to handing out a punishment? There are not set punishments for this kind of thing. Say he got this right after the bowl game....would you still expect him not to play against Alabama? It's always funny to me when people say things like this as if there's some sort of set standard or guide book as far as these things go. I will agree that his punishment problem should be partial to entirely suspended for the Alabama game - but you could also argue that if Hoke thinks he's been punished enough outside of that and won't do it again, then that should suffice because that's the point of a it not? To correct the behavior and make sure it doesn't happen again? I won't think any less of Hoke if Toussaint plays because I trust that he believes he's punished Toussaint enough. However, if Clark plays I think everyone agrees that's a much different story.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:57 a.m.

Well, as long as he was only a friendly drunk...


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:07 a.m.

I'll say it again. Fitz will play against Bama. book it.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:38 a.m.

.12? That is .04 over the limit. The guy probably had one beer too many. Not to excuse it, but at least he was not pulling a Grady. Suspended for Alabama is a huge penalty...but it should end there.


Wed, Aug 15, 2012 : 8:22 p.m.

They stopped him because he ran a red light...Thank God no one was coming thru the intersection. Because he didn't kill someone does NOT make it okay. Is it okay if you shoot at some one 6 times and miss??? NO!, It's still attempted murder. Anyway...why does it have to be illegal to be against "team rules"??? Any thing "legal" is okay with UM and Hoke???


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 5:53 p.m.

and .05 from super drunk!

Adam Zeeb

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:28 p.m.

0.12 is more like 3 beers too many. A guy his size would have to drink 6 beers in an hour to get to 0.12. That's a lot to be driving.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:39 a.m.

Sorry--wish I could edit these posts: Coffay's accident occurred in May 2011 not 2012. He was 20 or so at the time of the accident, in the same range as these football players. (source:


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:35 a.m.

website didn't get in there:


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:34 a.m.

You mean, at least he didn't pull a Kevin Coffay of Montgomery County, MD who crashed his car into a tree and killed 3 of his friends, at blood alcohol of 0.16, last May. And though you don't intend to, you are excusing it. Suspended for Bama is a small penalty--the smallest of possible penalties. The coach will do what he will do, and the courts will do what they do--but I don't understand why we minimize the use of alcohol and the extreme dangers of driving while intoxicated. We are very lucky that we are only talking about a traffic stop and cooperation, rather than another death or injury, but according to Your Blood Alcohol Level, he probably had 5 or so drinks in less than 2 hrs, assuming he is about 225 lbs. That is significant. Not one beer too many. It is not responsible to the community, the team, or himself, let alone the other people on the road.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:59 a.m.

A pellet gun? That looks like a real gun? These kids from dangerous urban areas (Youngstown OH) need to have psychological counseling when they arrive in Ann Arbor for the trauma makes them think they are in danger or need to appear dangerous. Seriously, I think it would be a good idea. Maybe they all have PTSD.


Mon, Aug 27, 2012 : 3:54 p.m.

Disclaimer on the website: Disclaimer: All Airsoft guns are sold with an orange tip. It is illegal to remove the orange tip. Removing the orange tip will void your warranty. You must be 18 years of age or older to purchase any Airsoft gun. The police report does not say if the orange tip had been removed. They confiscated it and put it in "evidence". If it was fully legal, why did they confiscate it?


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 5:51 p.m.

Robert, I take it you don't know what a pellet gun is.

Robert Granville

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:49 p.m.

I take it you don't know what an airsoft gun is. Every 23 year old male in the washtenaw area has owned one, held one or knows someone who did... they're toys. Children's toys... They are not dangerous. They do not give off an air of danger. They are easily differentiated from real weapons.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:58 a.m.

oh and yes I have been to Youngstown. I use to work for Packard Electric. All those jobs are gone so i'm sure the people left are just like people in other urban areas without jobs for kids or adults.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:56 a.m.

Amelia, You admit it is dangerous in Youngstown. You say you would never go there. Yet you think it is just an excuse for Fitz. I taught a few years back in the Flint schools. The kids would show me their bullet wounds, show me pictures of their dead friends and relatives. Like Thomas Rawls said just yesterday. He grew up with kids who are dead. Why is it hard to understand that people who grew up in these environments (not the suburbs of Youngstown) would be damaged. How can one not be damaged? Flint, Detroit, Cleveland, ect. These places are violent, dangerous places to grow up.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:05 a.m.

Are you serious? First of all you have your basic premise wrong: Youngstown is nothing near an urban community. Have you ever been there? I grew up in that part of Ohio and although I would never then, nor now, go to Youngstown, the only part of your comment that is true is that it is dangerous. Ann Arbor should be a cake walk for him. He made a mistake, a big one, but stop making excuses.

Billy Bob Schwartz

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:56 a.m.

Seems like pulling that thing out to defend against a real gun would likely be fatal to the pelletier.

The C-O

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:17 a.m.

Scott, Sad to say, but you are absolutely on to it! I am working on something similar to what you just described. Look around the country and you see it at all the major universities.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:39 a.m.



Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:56 p.m.

@ SEC Fan Hasn't Michigan gone like 7-3 over the last ten bowl games against the SEC?


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:35 a.m.

Haha!! Michigan owns the SEC and Urban Meyer!! All your crying won't keep Fitz out of the OSU game this year!!


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:34 a.m.

We do not want the honey badger. Jordan Kovacs will do just fine.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:27 a.m.

What's Michigan's all time record against the SEC again???? No wonder you come on here with your scared little comments on every article!!


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:14 a.m.

it's no be a "mich man" has become a joke outside of aa. no honor...losers who think the ultimate achievement is to win the big 10...then lose their bowl game...


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:01 a.m.

i hope that is a joke.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:33 a.m.

Question: Do the Wolverines actually need Fitz Toussaint in order to win? Should one mistake cost him a chance to play in the big game? Can Thomas Rawls do as well as Fitz? Are there freshmen available who might be able to light up the board? Is Alabama so overwhelming that perhaps Michigan should just cancel the game entirely? It's too bad we can't get some film footage of this year's Crimson Tide team to see whether or not they are truly that far superior to the Wolverine football squad. Has anybody been scouting BAMA who can give us some insight?


Wed, Aug 15, 2012 : 6:29 p.m.

Fits has proven he is hard to tackle because he is a deceptive runner. So far, based on limited snaps, Rawls appears to try to run over defenders. Given the size and speed of the Bama defense Fitz would probably be more effective. Odds are that Fitz sits and we'll see how Rawls does.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:55 p.m.

No, we probably don't need Fitz to win - but we probably don't need Denard to win either. We would have a chance to win if either player is out for the Alabama game it just becomes progressively worse with each star player out. Fitz was undoubtedly our best RB, and productive member of the offense, by years end last year. Rawls is just a different type of runner that has his place in our offense but won't get the production that we probably need to have a great chance at beating Bama.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:09 a.m.

Scout Bama? Where have you been for the past 3 years? On Uranus?


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:12 a.m.

do they need Fitz? well, no. They need miracles!

Matt Patercsak

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:01 a.m.

Thomas Rawls cannot do as well as fitz. he can do better.

Big Tex

Mon, Aug 13, 2012 : 11:54 p.m.

Tsk, naughty boy! We will really, REALLY punish you (the next time) ... we really, REALLY (kinda, sorta, maybe) mean it!!


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 2:34 p.m.

article from espn written by adam rittenberg. . . dantonio allowed running back glenn winston to return to practice the same day winston was released from jail after serving four months for his role in an assult that seriously injured msu hockey player a.j. sturges. i disagreed with the decision at the time, and it blew up in dantonio's face when winston was at the center of the residence hall assult that landed rucker and other players in hot water. dantonio has tried to clean up msu's off-field reputation, but his handling of winston was a disaster. GO BLUE!!!

Big Tex

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:27 p.m.

Hookem, you're citing some dopey blog for a source? Gimme something from a solid source to back up your point, b/c Coach D has punished all miscreants appropriately, even those who were just in the wrong place at the wrong time and did absolutely nothing illegal (Rather Hall incident). Hoke, on the other hand, will have these boys rested N ready and playing against 'Bama, you can count on that.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:12 a.m.

Yeah, Hoke needs to practice some "zero tolerance" like good old Coach Dantonio right?

Matt Patercsak

Mon, Aug 13, 2012 : 11:48 p.m. This blog has a great article on Hoke and his decision on Toussaint and Clark. Worth a read for sure.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 12:33 a.m.

Thanks for the link. At least that court date will bring some degree of closure on Fitz, and allow the coach to make a decision.

The C-O

Mon, Aug 13, 2012 : 11:42 p.m.

Dropped to reckless operation or something similar, one game suspension and life goes on! Go T. Rawls and Go Blu!!!


Mon, Aug 13, 2012 : 11:36 p.m.

Brady Joke must be waiting to see whether he pleads innocent or guilty.


Wed, Aug 15, 2012 : 12:03 a.m.

Jeff Smoker, Plaxico, and Rather Hall ring a bell? Pot calling the kettle WAY more black.


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 3:08 a.m.

Hookem'...your team is as irrelevant as Michigan. Loving life in the past? Bring back Earl Campbell...LOL!


Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:07 a.m.

Ohhhhhh.....pooooor scared Sparty. Don't worry Coach Hoke said he'd take the foot off the gas once the Wolverines are up by 28 in the fourth quarter against the Spartys!

Steve McQueen

Tue, Aug 14, 2012 : 1:06 a.m.

At least our coach is not a dishonest scumbag like your coach is. loser.