Queensland Reds recruit Scott Higginbotham is free to play in Tuesday night’s final pre-season trial after the Australian Rugby Union completed their investigation into his arrest.
Higginbotham will face court on February 21 over an incident in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley precinct, charged with assaulting a police officer and being found in a police establishment without a lawful excuse.
An ARU spokesperson said after assessing preliminary findings they were happy to allow him to return to the Reds’ fold, paving the way for the 30-year-old to feature against the Melbourne Rebels at Ballymore.
“After finalising our initial investigation the ARU is comfortable to allow Scott Higginbotham to resume his training and playing commitments with the Reds, until such time as the police matter is resolved,” the spokesperson said.
“Scott has cooperated with the investigation and has been reminded of how seriously the ARU takes off-field behaviour.
“There is a police matter which is ongoing and no determination on any sanctions will be made until that reaches a conclusion.”
Higginbotham, a former captain of the Melbourne Rebels, was reportedly trying to play “peacemaker” with police at the Brunswick St beat after one of his friends was arrested for public urination.
A taser was pulled out, but not used against Higginbotham, who was later slammed by coach Nick Stiles for his poor behaviour.
Higginbotham had only just resumed training with the Reds after completing two seasons in the Japanese Top League.