Police in Virginia are reviewing a traffic stop where Washington Redskins wide receiver Paul Richardson, was ticketed after the player alleged that an officer asked him if he was a drug dealer during the stop.
Richardson said that a Virginia State Trooper pulled him over on April 24 in Loudoun County, Virginia. The player, who only recently signed with the Redskins, said that he was cited for not having proper registration for his new Mercedes SUV, ESPN reported.
After his encounter, the player took to Twitter to complain that the trooper had treated him unfairly during the stop. Richardson said the officer asked if he was a gang member and stated that he thought the player could be a drug dealer because he was driving a new and expensive vehicle.
Richardson made his accusations in two tweets he later deleted.
“I’ve had this car 2 weeks and this amazing officer gave me a ticket for only having temporary registration,” Richardson said in one tweet. “Mind you I have up to 2 months in Va before needing to register it AGAIN in Virginia.”
In a second tweet, the player added, “Before asking my name he asked me if I was in a gang, then minutes later told me he thought I was a dealer (drugs). What a welcome to the east coast. Finished up with asking me how much car cost me.”
A spokesperson for the Virginia State Police confirmed to ESPN that Richardson had been cited, “because the vehicle did not have license plates displayed as required by Virginia law.” The police also noted Richardson was cited “for failing to have the vehicle properly registered.”
The department also noted that an investigation into the stop had been started since the player’s tweets on the incident.
“While no formal complaint has been filed,” department spokeswoman Corinne Geller said, “the Department is reviewing the matter, to include the trooper’s in-car camera footage of the traffic stop, to determine if the traffic stop was handled in accordance with state police policy.”
Richardson signed with the Redskins for a five-year deal worth $40 million after going free agent last year. He began his career in 2014 having been picked by the Seattle Seahawks in the second round (45th overall) in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.