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This article was published 21/3/2013 (1356 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Former Miami Dolphins wide receiver Mark Duper was released from jail Thursday, charged after police say he beat his 17-year-old son during a series of fights at their Jacksonville home.
Duper, who starred for the Dolphins from 1982 to 1992, spent a night in jail after his arrest Wednesday on one count of felony child abuse. He was released Thursday afternoon after posting a $5,000 bail, police in Jacksonville said.
Authorities say Duper attacked his son, Marcus, three times and knocked him out twice.
Messages left on Duper's cellphone by The Associated Press were not returned Thursday. He told The Miami Herald that the fight was "a family matter."
Duper caught 511 passes for 8,869 yards and 59 touchdowns in his 11-year career with the Dolphins. Duper, who legally changed his name to Mark Super Duper, was named to three Pro Bowls and was a two-time All-Pro selection. He is a member of the Dolphins Honor Roll.
Former Dolphins defensive end Hugh Green told The Associated Press by telephone that he witnessed the brawls. He said Marcus Duper started the fights, thinking he could "beat his father. I saw Mark defending himself after a young son was defiant."
Capriati facing charges
NORTH PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Former tennis star Jennifer Capriati has been charged with battery and stalking after police said she punched her ex-boyfriend on Valentine's Day while he was working out at a gym.
North Palm Beach police say Ivan Brannan was working out when the 36-year-old Capriati approached him and yelled at him. Brannan told police that he tried to get away by walking to the men's locker room, but Capriati blocked his path and punched him in the chest.
Brannan told police he and Capriati broke up in 2012 and that she has harassed and stalked him since then.
Messi proud of new pope
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- Lionel Messi feels "proud" that Pope Francis is a fellow Argentine and wants to meet the new head of the Roman Catholic Church.
The world's top footballer spoke Thursday for the first time in public about Pope Francis after training with the rest of the Argentina squad for Friday's World Cup qualifier against Venezuela in Buenos Aires.
"All Argentines are proud the Pope is from here," Messi said. "Obviously, one day I'd like to meet him."
Pope Francis is a former archbishop of Buenos Aires and life-long supporter of football club San Lorenzo, which is based in the Argentine capital.
Surgery for L.A.'s Ramirez
TUCSON, Ariz. -- Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez is scheduled to undergo surgery Friday on his right thumb and is expected to be sidelined for eight weeks, leaving Los Angeles to look for alternatives at shortstop until he's ready to play.
An MRI indicated that Ramirez has a torn ligament in his thumb, the team said Thursday. Dr. Steve Shin, a sports-medicine hand specialist, is scheduled to perform the surgery in Los Angeles.
Ramirez was injured Tuesday night while playing for the Dominican Republic in its victory over Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic championship game in San Francisco.
Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said Ramirez could stat rehab in about three weeks.
Colletti ruled out an immediate trade to address the temporary loss of Ramirez.
"Not as of now," Colletti said. "If it was all year long, we'd think about it differently. We've got some depth."
Dee Gordon and Luis Cruz appear to be the leading candidates to be the opening day shortstop.
-- The Associated Press