Two Terps athletes charged in theft, use of credit card


University of Maryland police have arrested a football player and a member of the women's basketball team in connection with the alleged theft and unauthorized use of a telephone credit card.

Campus police arrested Brian Underwood, 20, a redshirt freshman from New York, and charged him with five counts of theft and related charges stemming from the unauthorized use of a telephone credit card taken from another Maryland student in October.

Police allege that Underwood placed $8.58 worth of calls on the phone card, which they allege was taken by Allene K. Williams, 19, a sophomore from New York.

Williams, a member of the women's basketball team, who goes by her middle name, Kwana, is alleged by campus police to have distributed the card's account number among her friends, who made a total of 157 calls worth $137.18 in a three-week span from mid-October until early November of last year.

Underwood, who ran for 180 yards on 41 carries with one touchdown last season, was arrested Sunday and released on $5,000 bond. Williams, who faces theft charges in two other incidents, is free on a total of $8,000 in bonds, pending trials in April and May.

L Neither Underwood nor Williams could be reached for comment.

Football coach Mark Duffner said last night, "We're not going to make any comment until all the facts are in and we're able to review them."

Women's basketball coach Chris Weller and athletic director Debbie Yow declined to comment, citing the Buckley Amendment, which protects the privacy of students.

However, a department statement said the allegation concerning Underwood was "being reviewed by the department and by coach Mark Duffner" while acknowledging it was "aware that allegations continue to be made against Kwana Williams."

Williams, who led the team in scoring when she was suspended in mid-January, was charged that month with taking a purse, calculator and textbook of a woman who had reported those items missing from the 24-hour room of the university's undergraduate library in November.

Later in January, police charged Williams with going to the Maryland Book Exchange, one of the campus' bookstores, to attempt to sell back three textbooks that had been reported stolen by a campus student last October,

In the incident for which Williams was most recently charged, police say a student's book bag was taken from a locker in the University Book Center, the other major campus bookstore. The bag was recovered in a women's restroom of the student union, where the book center is located, without the wallet or its contents, which included a telephone credit card.

According to court documents, when the victim gave police his November phone bill, they noted 123 unauthorized long distance calls and 34 unauthorized local calls, many of which were placed from a phone number in Williams' dorm suite and some of which were made to Williams' home number in Brooklyn or to a place identified as her mother's office.

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