Former NFL star Carl Pickens hides in attic to avoid Gwinnett deputies

Carl Pickens

Carl Pickens

LAWRENCEVILLE — With Gwinnett County sheriff’s deputies outside attempting to serve warrants accusing him of attacking his wife, former NFL wide receiver Carl Pickens threw a Hail Mary.

It was intercepted.

Deputies visited Pickens’ home in Sugarloaf Country Club at about 10:30 a.m. Sunday, almost a month after warrants were issued charging the 43-year-old with battery. According to incident reports, Pickens — a standout at the University of Tennessee and Pro Bowler with the Cincinnati Bengals — was seen “securing” a dog before disappearing inside. It took several attempts at the front door before Pickens’ wife answered and let the deputies in.

By then, they already knew that the man of the house was hiding in the attic.

“Once on the top floor, we could hear movement in the attic,” one responding deputy wrote in his report. “There was a fresh hole in the ceiling from the attic where Mr. Pickens had partially fallen, causing the loud crashing sound we had heard earlier.”

Pickens was ordered to come down and complied, authorities said. He was taken to the Gwinnett County jail, booked and released on $2,400 bond. The misdemeanor battery charge he’s facing stems from an incident on Dec. 7, 2013, first reported by the Daily Post.

According to a Gwinnett County police incident report, Pickens’ wife called authorities to their Sugarloaf residence because he had “put hands on her.”

Pickens’ wife said she, Pickens and a friend had gone to a movie that night and, when they returned home, the couple began arguing about why the friend had joined them. The verbal argument reportedly turned physical.

“(She) stated her husband picked her up and threw her on the couch, pinning her down by holding her neck and pushing her into the crevasse of the couch,” the report said. Pickens then smashed an iPad against a wall and threw a chair before leaving the home, his wife said.

Pickens was arrested in 2010 on family violence battery charges, and his wife reportedly told police the former football star had put hands on her “three or four others times” since then.