Police report offers new details on EWU quarterback Gage Gubrud’s contentious arrest


The Easterner Archives

Then sophomore quarterback Gage Gubrud speaks with media after EWU football’s spring game on April 22. Gubrud was arrested for obstructing a public servant in downtown Cheney in the early morning of Nov. 5.

By Michael Brock, Sports Editor

[UPDATE: On Dec. 6, 2017, the obstruction charges against Gage Gubrud and Kurt Calhoun were dismissed. The two had been scheduled to appear in Cheney Municipal Court on Dec. 7.

“They felt they had some important information to pass on to law enforcement,” attorney Bevan Maxey said of Gubrud and Calhoun. “It was not their intent to obstruct the investigation.”]

Two EWU football players, junior quarterback Gage Gubrud and junior linebacker Kurt Calhoun, were arrested on charges of obstruction in the early hours of Sunday, Nov. 5, Cheney Police Captain Richard Beghtol told The Easterner on Tuesday.

On Sunday afternoon, EWU head coach Aaron Best made the decision to suspend Gubrud and Calhoun for the Saturday, Nov. 11 game at the University of North Dakota.

“I was made aware this morning of a situation that occurred last night involving Gage and Kurt,” said Best. “This incident is in violation of our team rules, and in response to the situation, I have suspended both players for this week’s game at North Dakota.”

Best classified the incident, which occurred around midnight, roughly seven hours after the team’s Saturday afternoon loss to Weber State, as “unfortunate” during his media availability on Tuesday.

According to an incident report obtained from the Cheney City Clerk’s Office, officers observed a man, Spencer Payne, kicking a fence outside the Mason Jar at 101 F St. in downtown Cheney.

The officers proceeded to cross the street, and as they approached Payne, he allegedly delivered one final kick that caused the fencing to be torn away from the wall. Payne was detained, and arrested on a third-degree charge of malicious mischief.

As officers were examining the damage, Calhoun allegedly walked past the patrol vehicles and asked what was going on with his “homie.” According to the report, “Calhoun refused to leave and said that he was ‘not leaving without his boy.’ [He was informed] that he was deliberately hindering police efforts to complete an investigation.”

Calhoun was allegedly told by multiple officers to step back, and when he refused, he was placed under arrest for obstruction of a public servant, a misdemeanor.

(Per the Chapter 9.46.195 of Title 9 in the Revised Code of Washington, obstruction of a public servant is defined as, “No person shall intentionally obstruct or attempt to obstruct a public servant in the administration or enforcement of this chapter by using or threatening to use physical force or by means of any unlawful act. Any person who violates this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.”)

According to Cheney Police Officer David J. Bailey’s report, that’s when “several other intoxicated subjects walked into the immediate area, started yelling at officers, and were instructed to leave.” The only one that allegedly did not comply was Gubrud, who said he was not leaving without his friends.

Gubrud was approached, and told again to “leave the immediate area” while the investigation was still underway. Gubrud did not abide right away, but eventually made his way across F St.

According to Cheney Police Officer Christopher Oakes, as Gubrud walked away he “advised me CPD Officers would be very sorry for doing what we were doing.”

As Officer Bailey was investigating further, he allegedly noticed Gubrud walk between the patrol vehicles and back onto the sidewalk where the officers were standing.

“I directed Gubrud again to leave or risk being arrested for hindering our investigation,” said Bailey in the report. “Gubrud stated that he was not leaving until his ‘boys were released.’ I asked Gubrud if having a criminal record was worth the interference he was currently causing, and he told me it was worth it.”

That is when Gubrud was placed under arrest for obstruction by Officer Oakes.

While placing Gubrud in handcuffs, Oakes allegedly told the junior quarterback that he “looked similar to an individual [he] had contacted a week prior.” When Gubrud said that wasn’t him, Oakes conceded that fact, but told Gubrud that his name and appearance were still familiar.

“Gage informed me it was because he’s the starting quarterback for the EWU football team,” Oakes said in the report. “And if I needed help to remind me, to look on all the billboards around town because he is on them.”

According to Captain Beghtol, nobody was booked into jail. All three were cited and released and given a court date to appear.

Both Gubrud and Calhoun have started every game for the Eagles this season. In nine games thus far, Gubrud—the reigning Big Sky Conference offensive co-MVP—has thrown for 2,897 yards and 22 touchdowns, while rushing for another 169 yards and four scores. Gubrud will be replaced for the UND game by redshirt freshman Eric Barriere, who will be making his first start at EWU.

Calhoun, meanwhile, has been productive at linebacker, with 68 tackles on the season, and was coming off a 13-tackle performance against Weber State. His backup is listed as sophomore Andrew Katzenberger, who has played in 16 career games, all as a reserve.