Despite junior welterweight titlist Terence Crawford being in preparation for the biggest fight of his career against fellow titilist Viktor Postol on July 23, he still has a criminal case hanging over his head. That case stems from an incident in April where Crawford was accused of causing thousands of dollars in damages to a hydraulic lift after he forcibly removed his car from an auto body shop, while allegedly refusing to pay an outstanding debt for a paint job.
As reported by RingTV.com, Crawford's criminal trial on several misdemeanor charges -- including theft of services, criminal mischief, assault in the third degree, and trespassing -- has been scheduled for August 9th. Crawford had originally been scheduled to begin trial this week, but was granted a continuance by a local judge.
Crawford's attorney Steve Lefler had this to say about the status of the case:
"He was charged with a couple of misdemeanors and I'm negotiating with the city attorney now," Lefler said in a phone interview. "We'll probably resolve something. If we don't, we have a trial set for Aug. 9, but I'm reasonably confident — I think the city attorney's office is discovering the case isn't as strong as they thought it was, so they're (willing) to negotiate a little bit."
Lefler continued by saying that their side could end up reaching a private settlement with the auto shop owner Michael Nelson, and that if they do, that could potentially change the priorities for the prosecutor's office (insinuating that they may drop the criminal charges).
"The city attorney's office certainly in Omaha doesn't want to become a collection agency," Lefler said. "So their position is we're here to do justice. If this were a very serious case it would be a felony. It wouldn't be a misdemeanor. So I don't want to say it falls in the, ‘no-big-deal-category,' but it's pretty close. And if I am able to resolve the financial matter with (Nelson) then I don't think the city attorney is going to care at all."
We'll have to see if this issue becomes a noticeable distraction for Crawford as he's now just about two weeks away from his title unification fight on PPV.