Agent for Tampa Bay Rays' Brandon Guyer: 'He's an innocent victim'

Published Mar. 27, 2012

PORT CHARLOTTE — Rays minor-league outfielder Brandon Guyer had no knowledge of Matt Bush's suspended driver's license when he allowed the pitcher to use his Dodge Durango on Thursday, the day Bush was arrested after a DUI hit-and-run accident, his agent said Monday.

"He's an innocent victim," said Guyer's agent, Jamie Appel.

Guyer has declined to comment. Appel said Bush was only supposed to drop Guyer off at the team's facility in Port Charlotte on Thursday morning then immediately return to their apartment, where the teammates were roommates. Appel said Guyer didn't give Bush permission to use the SUV for anything else that day.

Bush told police he drove to Sarasota then stopped to buy a few drinks before getting arrested in North Port. Police say Bush hit the motorcycle of 72-year-old Tony Tufano and fled the scene. Bush's blood-alcohol level was measured at .180, more than twice the level that Florida presumes a driver is impaired.

Appel said Guyer's SUV has been seized as evidence, and he has cooperated with police in the investigation. FHP lieutenant Greg Bueno said Monday it doesn't appear Guyer is the target of any criminal wrongdoing.

But with the victim in the case, Tufano, in critical condition in a Fort Myers hospital, Guyer could find himself involved in a civil suit because he owns the vehicle. Tufano, in an intensive care unit, was put in an induced coma Monday and hooked up to a breathing tube and ventilator. "It's a wait-and-see kind of thing," daughter-in-law Shannon Moore said.

Appel said they're going to let the legal process play out, but Guyer is in "good standing" with the Rays.

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