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2 Penn State players charged with assault after fight

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Penn State defensive tackle Chris Baker and backup linebacker Navorro Bowman were charged yesterday with assault over a campus fight in which police said a man was kicked and punched.

Baker, of Windsor, Conn., and Bowman, of District Heights, Md., were arraigned on charges including felony aggravated assault and two misdemeanors, simple assault and disorderly conduct. They were also charged with summary harassment and stalking.

Baker and Bowman were released on their recognizance. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for next Wednesday.

Cornerback Knowledge Timmons will be issued a summons by mail for charges of disorderly conduct and defiant trespass in connection with an incident after the fight, Centre County assistant district attorney Steve Sloane said.

Penn State plays at Michigan State tomorrow in the regular-season finale.

"In early October, several players had been demoted and/or lost playing time based upon our initial understanding of the facts regarding the incident," according to a statement from the football team. "Based upon today's information, Chris Baker, Navorro Bowman and Knowledge Timmons will not travel with the team to East Lansing."

Baker attorney Karen Muir said her client cooperated with police throughout the investigation and offered to take a lie-detector test.

"We maintained he was not involved in the fight," she said.

Bowman's attorney, Stacy Parks Miller, also said her client was innocent.

"The charges and the documents clearly paint a picture of self-defense," she said.

Police said they were called to the Hetzel Union Building early Oct. 7 to break up a fight during a party. One man suffered a bloody nose and lip after he said he was kicked and punched "by numerous people," according to a police criminal complaint. The man was treated at the scene.

Baker started seven games this season, compiling 37 tackles and 4.5 sacks.

He is awaiting trial on charges for a separate fight at an off-campus apartment in April.

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