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Michael Vick

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Biography

Michael Dwayne Vick (born June 26, 1980 in Newport News, Virginia) is a quarterback with the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League. He was drafted as the first overall pick in the 2001 NFL Draft out of Virginia Tech, has set league records, and had won lucrative product endorsement contracts. He was suspended from play in August 2007 by the NFL after his guilty plea to federal felony charges resulting from an unlawful interstate dog fighting ring. He was released on bond pending sentencing in December. On September 26, he was found in probationary violation by federal authorities due to marijuana use based upon a September 13 test, and ordered to home confinement. Vick was indicted by a Virginia grand jury in Surry County on September 25 for felony animal beating/killing and dogfighting charges with arraignment scheduled for October 3. Most of his product endorsement relationships had also been suspended or terminated by August 2007, and the following month, two banks filed multi-million dollar law suits to recover loans for investment purposes which the banks claimed to be in default of their terms.

Beginning on April 25, 2007, widespread media publicity was drawn by discovery of evidence of unlawful dog fighting activities at a property he owns in a rural county in southeastern Virginia. Vick was accused of financing the operation, directly participating in dog fights and executions, and personally handling thousands of dollars in related gambling activities. As of August 17, the situation was under continued investigation at both the federal and local levels.

After the Virginia Tech massacre in April 2007, Vick teamed up with the United Way to donate $10,000 to assist families affected by the tragedy. Vick explained, "When tragic things like this happen, families have enough to deal with, and if I can help in some small way, that's the least I can do." The Vick Foundation is collecting donations from local communities in both Atlanta and Virginia that will be placed in the United In Caring Fund for Victims of the Virginia Tech Tragedy and the special fund at the United Way of Montgomery, Radford and Floyd counties, which serves the Virginia Tech area. Vick's foundation said the money will be used to provide help with funeral expenses, transportation for family members and other support services.

On June 22, 2007, a charity golf tournament featuring Vick, intended in part to raise scholarships in memory of Virginia Tech's shooting victims, was rescheduled for September. The tournament at Kingsmill Resort & Spa had been set to begin on June 29, and a reason for the change was not announced. The tournament is the latest in a series of Virginia appearances either canceled or delayed since Vick's name surfaced in a dog fighting investigation.

"It's difficult, because Mike (Vick) is someone who we held up as doing it right," Bernard Johnson told the Newport News Daily Press. Johnson, who has coached kids, including Vick, in the Boys and Girls Club football program for 28 years, said the lesson to kids now is all about responsibility and accountability.

Lee said a key part of Peninsula All-Star Football Camp is a semi-private session in which parents and coaches are ordered out of the auditorium while college and professional athletes tell the high school players how to get their personal lives in order. In the session, the campers are warned about potential dangers from parties to drugs to girls to friends.



 


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