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UA football player faces domestic assault charges


Wildcat File Photo
Arizona Daily Wildcat

Manuia Savea, senior right tackle

By Brett Erickson
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
November 26, 1999
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A UA football player was charged with three criminal violations last week - including domestic violence assault - after he allegedly pushed his wife, prompting her to lock herself in a bathroom.

University of Arizona head football coach Dick Tomey yesterday said he is prohibited from commenting about the incident or the decision to start Manuia Savea, senior right tackle, during Saturday's game against the University of Oregon.

"I can't answer that as you know," Tomey said. "I can't make a comment - that's what they're telling me in the athletic department."

UA Athletic Director Jim Livengood was out of town and unavailable for comment yesterday.

The reported incident occurred at about 9 p.m. Wednesday when the Tucson Police Department responded to a 911 call made by one of Savea's neighbors.

Sgt. Brett Klein, a TPD spokesman, said Savea's wife had locked herself in a room inside Savea's house following a disagreement between the couple. Savea broke open the door and threw a stereo in the room before officers arrived, Klein said.

Klein said the stereo was not thrown at Savea's wife. Savea "also pushed (his wife) at some point," Klein said.

Klein said police do not know what caused the reported argument.

Savea, a sociology major, was arrested on criminal misdemeanor charges of domestic violence assault, domestic violence damage and contributing to the delinquency and dependency of a minor.

The last charge was filed because the couple's three children - ages 4, 3 and 1 - were present during the reported altercation, Klein said.

Savea was booked into Pima County Jail on Wednesday and released Thursday on his own recognizance.

The 24-year-old native of American Samoa has started in all seven games for the Wildcats this season. Last year he started in all 13 games and earned honorable mention All-Pacific 10 Conference honors.

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