Silent Young ignores judge in court?
Troubled former NFL player Titus Young, in jail awaiting trial on 11 charges including four felony counts of attempted burglary, refused to speak and ignored the judge at his Friday hearing, USA Today reported.
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Young, wearing an orange jumpsuit and standing inside a protective cage with his eyes closed much of the time, didn't respond when Judge Andre Manssourian said “Good morning, sir”, “Can you hear me?” and “Are you Titus Demetrius Young?”
Young's lawyer, Altus W. Hudson II, said his client was exercising his right to remain silent. Young also ignored his father, who has said his son suffers from a mental disorder and called out to him in the Orange County (Calif.) Superior Court.
The judge doubled Young's bail to $50,000, claiming, “Mr. Young poses a danger to the community.” Even his attorney, when asked if the 23-year-old's family thinks he should remain behind bars until his next hearing on June 4, replied “Uh-huh.” The family declined to comment.
Hudson requested and was granted the right to have a mental health professional evaluate Young, whose three arrests in a week raised concern for his mental health and who reportedly admitted to a former teammate that he has problems and "wants to get cured."
“He’s aware of the situation that he’s dealing with and he showed me a paper and we went over it and I looked over it, and I understand it,” Lions linebacker Stephen Tulloch told the Detroit Free Press. “A lot of people laugh about it and ke-ke-ke about it, but it’s real. He has head issues, and the Titus Young when he came in as a rookie and the Titus Young now is two different people.
“It’s kind of like when you look at him, he’s looking through you. It’s different. You can tell there’s something going on in his mind, in his head, and I hope that he can get help.”
Tulloch said Young opened up to him during a chance meeting on a flight from Miami to Detroit. He said the former wide receiver discussed his disorder, which Tulloch declined to reveal.
“He has a problem,” Tulloch said. “Ain’t no question about it. We had some long discussions and he showed me some things and I was like, ‘All right.’ The fact that before he didn’t realize it, now he realizes it."
On May 5, Young was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence, and then arrested again the same day for trying to take his car from a tow yard in Moreno Valley, Calif. The 23-year-old was arrested a third time on May 12, for allegedly breaking into a San Clemente home. He also is charged with trying to rob a gas station. He has pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
Young faces charges of burglary, assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest, and prosecutors in Riverside County are weighing whether to charge him in the other two arrests.
According to Riverside County court documents, the mother of his 8-month-old son, Marjani Maldonado, filed for a permanent restraining order against him on Thursday, citing a threat of domestic violence. In the filing, Maldonado claims that Young threatened and harassed her at her Moreno Valley home.
"He would say things like, 'I understand why O.J. [Simpson] killed his wife.' He says, 'We're always gonna be a family,'" the filing states, as reported by The Riverside Press-Enterprise. "He got mad and yelled at my neighbors and tried to fight multiple people that he doesn't even know."
Maldonado said Young is not mentally well, which his father also said after the arrests.
"Titus Young Sr. has been clinically diagnosed with a mental disorder, and I am afraid of what he is capable of doing," the restraining order request states. "He also has been in a mental help facility more than once and still believes that he does not have a problem."
In the court filing, Maldonado claims that Young often would begin inexplicably talking to himself and would go on walks without returning home. She also accuses Young of taking their son to San Diego without telling her, which led her to file a missing persons report.
Young's father, Richard, told the Free Press his son has suffered from mental illness since suffering a concussion in 2011 and was prescribed the antidepressant Seroquel, which is used to treat bipolar disorders and schizophrenia. He said Young has sought treatment at several outpatient facilities.
"I hope they just forgive Titus because this ain't none of Titus; it wasn't none of his fault," he told The Free Press. "I look at my son right now, I don't see my son. That's not my son. I know my son."
Young was a standout for the Lions after being drafted in 2011 but was benched for detrimental conduct last season and then released.
NESN and The Associated Press contributed to this report.