Star athlete, celebrity wife surprised by tax lien

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Even nice guys end up in tax trouble sometimes. Former Detroit Lions quarterback Rodney Peete and his actress wife, Holly Robinson Peete, did not see it coming…the Internal Revenue Service lien for more than $156,000 that hit them last summer.

In fact, the Peetes said they didn’t know about the lien until they were contacted by the Detroit News for comment. Not that they did not realize there was a problem. The couple had been talking with the IRS for some time, trying to resolve the issue, said Rodney Peete.

After being approached and made aware of the lien, Robinson Peete provided the Detroit News with documents that gave details. The lien was filed on July 22 with the Los Angeles County Recorder of Deeds in the amount of $156,573 in taxes relating to income from 2008.

"This is a tough situation. We were both blindsided by this", Rodney Peete said, who added that the couple have fired their accountant. "We had been in conversations with the IRS for a few months now and were working through paperwork and things like that."

The Peetes stated that in 2008 and 2009 they experienced some cash flow problems. When jobs fell through and their health insurance with the NFL expired, they had to pay significant costs related to their son’s autism and schooling.

“The NFL is the craziest, most violent sport, and its insurance is the worst", Peete said.

According to his calculations, he and his wife owe the IRS approximately $20,000. They expect to be able to pay the debt off soon thanks to some new employment opportunities.

"We're just a family trying to do the best we can", Robinson Peete said. "We ran into an issue and we're dealing with it."

Peete, age 44, joined the Detroit Lions in 1989, and played for the team for five seasons. He played for five other teams before retiring in 2005. He later launched a career in broadcasting with Fox Sports Network as the host of The Best Damn Sports Show, Period. The Peetes also host a show on Oprah Radio called Meet the Peetes.

Robinson Peete starred in 21 Jump Street, Hanging with Mr. Cooper, and played Diana Ross in the movie The Jacksons: An American Dream. She competed on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice earlier this year, coming in second place. Soon she will begin hosting a new CBC daytime show called The Talk.

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