Posted: 10:50 am Thursday, May 27th, 2010

Dolphins DE Phillip Merling charged with domestic violence charge, bail set at $15,000 

By Post Staff

Merling's mug shot

Merling's mug shot

A Broward County judge set bail at $15,000 Thursday for Dolphins defensive end Phillip Merling and ordered him to stay away from his pregnant girlfriend.

Merling, 25, was arrested early Thursday morning in Weston on a domestic violence charge. The third-year backup DE was charged on one count of aggravated battery on a victim he should have known was pregnant, the Broward Sheriff’s Office confirmed.

The 6-foot-4, 305-pound Merling is accused of striking his girlfriend in the face, causing redness and swelling and a cut on her lip.

Police responded to the incident at 1:36 am today. The girlfriend is two months pregnant with the couple’s second child.

Merling’s arrest Thursday came two days before the Dolphins will open their mandatory mini-camp which will run Friday to Sunday.

A second-round pick in 2008 out of Clemson, Merling has not blossomed into the player the Dolphins envisioned, with just 3.5 sacks and two starts in two seasons. He is expected to compete with Jared Odrick, the Dolphins’ 2010 first-round pick, for a starting job this season.

He is the fourth Dolphins player arrested since February, joining cornerback Will Allen (DUI), defensive lineman Tony McDaniel (domestic battery), and running back Ronnie Brown (DUI).

The team will release a comment about the situation later today. Find the full story here.

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