June 23, 2018
A former college teammate vandalized the car of ex-Eagles cornerback Lito Sheppard in Florida, police said.
According to FirstCoastNews, Sheppard called the Jacksonville Beach Police Department on Monday, June 17, and claimed his car was damaged while eating at a restaurant. Sheppard said he didn't notice the damage until leaving and had to pull over to have his car towed.
He called the restaurant and asked to view surveillance video. The business complied, and Sheppard gave the video to News4Jax. In the footage, a black car parks next to Sheppard's white BMW. A man gets out an appears to pour something on the gas tank of Sheppard's car. A woman also gets out of the black car, gets something from the trunk and bends down near each of the BMW's four tires.
Sheppard told the news station that his car stalled about a block away from the restaurant. He discovered that all four tires had been slashed and there were marks where the gas tank had been forcibly opened. The damages cost about $14,000, according to Sheppard.
Police announced Friday that they believe the vandalism was conducted by Derrick "Jabar" Gaffney — who is Sheppard's cousin, was his teammate at the University of Florida and played 11 seasons in the NFL — along with his longtime girlfriend, who was not named by authorities.
Sheppard reportedly said that he and Gaffney have a long-running feud that dates back to 2012, although the reason for the grudge is not clear. Sheppard and Gaffney, both 37 years old, also played football together at Raines High School in Jacksonville.
Sheppard played seven seasons for the Eagles from 2002-2008, earning two Pro Bowl selections, before moving on to stints with the Jets, Vikings and Raiders. He was briefly teammates again with Gaffney in 2006 when Philadelphia signed the wide receiver to a one-year contract, but Gaffney was cut before the start of the season.
Gaffney has a history of legal troubles, with the most recent incident happening in 2017 when he was arrested for domestic battery.
Jacksonville Beach police have not announced an arrest as of Saturday.