Former NFL player Edawn Louis Coughman faked a hate crime at his business and planned to file an insurance claim on the stolen goods, police say.
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Coughman, 31, was arrested last week and charged with false report of a crime, insurance fraud, and concealing a license plate, before being released on bond.
Police say Coughman broke into his business, Create and Bake Restaurant and Coughman’s Creamery in Lawrenceville, Georgia, and spray-painted “racially-motivated words,” swastikas and “MAGA” on walls and seat cushions.
“It appears as though Edawn conjured a premeditated plan to damage his own property, attempt to make it appear as a hate crime, file a claim with his insurance company, and sell off the undamaged appliances and electronics,” the Gwinnett County Police Department said in a statement.
Coughman bounced around the league with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys and Seattle Seahawks, never playing in a regular season game.
The department said it received a 911 call about a burglary in progress, and that the caller reported the perpetrator driving a black Chevrolet Silverado with no license plate. Officers tracked down the Silverado and found Coughman inside, with “several televisions” in the vehicle.
“Edawn told officers that he noticed the damage and theft of equipment earlier in the day,” the department said. “He said that he called his insurance company to report the incident, but he did not call 911.”
After executing a search report, police found a yellow crow bar and black spray paint.