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Originally published Monday, June 14, 2010 at 6:33 PM

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Linebacker Leroy Hill returns for Seahawks workouts

Leroy Hill presence back with the Seahawks this week for workouts indicates that he is part of the plans for next season. The linebacker had been told by the NFL team to stay away from workouts the past two months to deal with legal issues.

Seattle Times staff reporter

Leroy Hill's absence from the Seattle Seahawks the past two months cast questions about his future with the team.

His presence back with the team this week for workouts indicates that he is part of the plans for next season.

The Seahawks had instructed Hill to stay away from the team's offseason workouts after he was arrested at his Issaquah home in April and charged with misdemeanor assault/domestic violence. He has returned and is expected to participate in the remainder of the team's offseason workouts.

Hill, 27, is still facing that charge at Issaquah Municipal Court. He has pleaded not guilty, and the case is proceeding toward a trial that could begin the final week of July.

Hill also faces potential repercussions in Georgia, where he is on probation after pleading guilty to misdemeanor drug possession in April. The charge dated back to a February 2009 incident in suburban Atlanta when he was found with less than an ounce of marijuana in the car, according to the police report.

The Seahawks held Hill out of offseason training for the past two months, a decision coach Pete Carroll said was to eliminate any distraction and let Hill deal with his legal issues.

The NFL has not disciplined Hill for either incident. Other NFL players have received a one-game suspension for drug transgressions comparable to Hill's case in Georgia. The league isn't expected to levy any discipline regarding the domestic-violence arrest until after the resolution of the case, according to a report published Monday on the league's official Web site.

In Hill's absence, David Hawthorne played weakside linebacker with the first-unit defense, prompting some speculation that the Seahawks were exploring its alternatives should it decide to part ways with Hill.

Hill's return to the team indicates it has plans. He is scheduled to make $6 million next season under the contract he signed in April 2009.

Hill became a starting linebacker for Seattle midway through his rookie year in 2005. He is one of the Seahawks' fastest linebackers and one of its hardest hitters, but over the past two years has missed nine of the team's 36 games because of injury.

He is expected to take part in the final four practices of the Seahawks' organized team activities (OTAs) beginning Tuesday. He also will be able to participate in the final three-day minicamp June 20-22.

Notes

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• Seattle signed TE Jameson Konz and DE/LB Dexter Davis, its two seventh-round picks to contracts last week. Three of the team's eight draft choices are now signed.

• The Seahawks also added DT Barrett Moen and DE Will Tukuafu last week while releasing TE Michael Allan, who attended Interlake High School in Bellevue, WR Patrick Carter, LB Kevin Dixon and S Quinton Teal.

Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or doneil@seattletimes.com

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