BY GEOFF HOBSON
Bengals kick returner Tremain Mack's legal problems that began when he drove without a license in Hamilton County last season ended Thursday when a Texas judge dismissed an application for his probation to be revoked.
But the NFL is still reviewing the case for possible sanctions, and Mack began serving a 20-day sentence in the Smith County Center Jail in Tyler, Texas, Wednesday in a separate matter stemming from a DUI there nearly three years ago.
David Levine, Mack's agent, said his client had planned to serve those days in Texas after the 1999 season. But that was the year Mack broke his wrist in the Pro Bowl and the court ruled he didn't have to begin serving the 20 days until this week. But because of the wait, his probation was extended until June.
"The consequences of violating probation in Hamilton County, as far as we're concerned, are now over," Levine said.
Just last week, Mack left the Hamilton County Justice Center in Cincinnati after serving 30 days for violating probation last year by driving without a license.
"If his probation had been revoked, he could have gone to jail for 180 days," said Buck Files, Mack's lawyer in Tyler. "But the court felt he had done enough in Ohio."
Mack, 26, received a four-game suspension from
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NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue before the 1999 season for DUIs that included one each during the 1997 and 1998 seasons.
Mack served about 120 days in jail before the '99 season. But he went back after this past season when cameras from Cincinnati television station WLWT-Channel 5 caught him driving to and from Paul Brown Stadium several times.
Reportedly tapes of the incident were sent to Tyler because Mack failed to have a DUI bumper sticker on his car, which is required. But the court still decided to dismiss the application to revoke his probation.
Levine has said his client has been clean for the past year and a half in 10-20 tests for alcohol per month.
"Tremain has faced charges in Texas as well as Ohio, and he'll have to get them all resolved if he wants a successful NFL career," said Bengals spokesman Jack Brennan. "It has been a long process for him. If the courts and the NFL tell us he is cleared to play, he'll be with us. He has been a good player and a good team member when he has been here."