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Steelers receiver didn't mean to litter

| Tuesday, June 12, 2012, 6:43 p.m.

Steelers receiver Emmanuel Sanders said Tuesday that he didn't intend to break the state's anti-littering laws and hopes there's still room for him in a local anti-littering campaign.

Speaking in the locker room during a break from Steelers minicamp, Sanders said he never meant to do anything wrong.

"I think littering is more throwing trash on the ground and knowing that you're wrong for it," he said. "I actually put the trash in the trash can. That's the big difference."

Sanders, 25, and Antonio Brown, 23, pleaded guilty Monday in Allegheny County Common Pleas Court to leaving boxes beside a private Dumpster on West Warrington Avenue in Beltzhoover. A judge fined each $300 plus court costs.

The Pennsylvania Resources Council partnered with the mayor's office on the anti-litter campaign, which included a television ad featuring Sanders encouraging people not to litter. David Mazza, regional director for the council, said Monday that it is pulling Sanders' ad until it could talk to him.

Mazza didn't return calls yesterday. Sanders could not be reached for comment later in the afternoon on whether he had heard from the Resources Council.

The campaign's website, www.donttrashmyturf.org, no longer provides a link to the Sanders ad.

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, who is featured in another of the ads, announced in May that Pittsburgh police will more strictly enforce the city's litter ordinances and fine scofflaws who throw trash on the ground.

Mayoral spokeswoman Joanna Doven said Monday that while the incident with Sanders is "unfortunate," it doesn't change the mayor's commitment to the anti-littering campaign.

She didn't return calls yesterday seeking mayoral response to Sanders' wish to remain in the campaign.

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