CRYSTAL RIVER — A former National Football League wide receiver turned substitute teacher and Weeki Wachee High School coach was arrested this week on multiple drug and driving charges, according to the Citrus County Sheriff's Office.
Ricky Feacher, 59, of Crystal River, faces charges of possession of marijuana, cocaine and drug paraphernalia, as well as fleeing law enforcement.
He was stopped Tuesday night while a Citrus deputy was conducting traffic enforcement in an area known for drug trafficking. Feacher wasn't wearing a seat belt, the deputy said.
Before pulling over, Feacher drove for about a mile, making turns, running stop signs and driving on the wrong side of the road, the Sheriff's Office said.
He eventually stopped, and deputies discovered cocaine and marijuana as well as a half bottle of Canadian whiskey, according to the report.
Feacher was arrested and booked into the Citrus County Detention Facility. He was released Wednesday on $11,000 bail.
Feacher began as a substitute teacher in Hernando County in February 2012 and was an assistant football coach at Weeki Wachee High during the past season.
He was recently hired as a paraprofessional at Eastside Elementary School in Hernando County. His first day would have been Wednesday.
Feacher was released from the paraprofessional position, and his coaching supplement was canceled. He will not be coaching next season. He also is no longer eligible to be a substitute teacher.
Feacher ranks as one of the best athletes in Hernando County history. He played receiver, running back and defensive back at Hernando High from 1969-71 and was the Leopards' most valuable player in football, basketball and track as a senior. He was inducted into the school's athletics hall of fame in 2011.
Feacher was a 10th-round pick in the 1976 NFL draft and spent almost all of his nine-year pro career with the Cleveland Browns. His career marks of 2,084 receiving yards and 15 touchdown catches still rank in the top 25 in franchise history.
Staff writer Matt Baker contributed to this report. Danny Valentine can be reached at (352) 848-1432. On Twitter: @HernandoTimes.