BALTIMORE (AP) – Maryland authorities said Tuesday they will charge a man with disorderly conduct in a cemetery for allegedly urinating on the grave of former Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell.
The man, who so far has been identified only as a Cleveland Browns fan, could face up to two years in jail and a $500 fine. He posted a video of the incident to YouTube this month.
“Everyone who has buried a loved one has the right to believe that their final resting place will be treated with respect,” Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger said in a written statement. “Bringing charges against this individual should act as a deterrent to others and assure the rest of us that no matter who you are, indecencies will not be committed against your final resting place.”
Shellenberger said the man will not be identified until charges are filed and served.
Art Modell died in 2012 at the age of 87. He spent 43 years as an NFL owner, overseeing the Browns from 1961 until he moved the team to Baltimore in 1996 to become the Ravens. Modell served as league president from 1967-69, helped finalize the first collective bargaining agreement with the players in 1968 and was the point man for the NFL’s lucrative contracts with television networks.
Modell and his wife, Patricia, are buried at Druid Ridge Cemetery in Baltimore.
David Modell, Art Modell’s son, said the family is thankful for the efforts of Baltimore County police and the decision by the state’s attorney to file charges.
“We also agree with the state’s attorney’s office that everyone who has buried a loved one has the right to know that the final resting place will not be defiled,” said Modell, who served as president and chief operating officer of the Ravens while Art ran the team. “We are a country of laws. Just because you’re angry, that doesn’t mean the laws no longer apply to you.”
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