The AFL is set to meet with Tarryn Thomas on Thursday over fresh allegations of domestic violence directed at the Kangaroos star.
The Lumaranatana and Kamilaroi man has been under an investigation for a number of days from the game's Integrity Unit for "inappropriate behaviour".
Thomas will appear to answer questions about accusations that allegedly were brought to the league's attention from outside of his football club.
The internal probe has been conducted separate from Thomas's club to the point that not even North Melbourne was aware of its proceedings.
The club's officials that have kept faith with the 23-year-old that he would turn around the triggers behind his poor behaviour towards women only found out about the investigation on the day before the AFL called for an immediate meeting.
The National Indigenous Times is not accusing Thomas of any wrongdoing and understands that Victoria Police has not confirmed that it is conducting their own investigation or that new criminal charges have been brought about at this stage.
Arden Street administration released an exclusive statement to the media on Wednesday night – before notifying supporters on its club website – to confirm that Thomas is willing to front the Docklands headquarters for a hearing on short notice.
"North Melbourne received a notification from the AFL Integrity Unit on Wednesday that Tarryn Thomas is under investigation," the statement read.
"Following a new allegation of inappropriate behaviour, the club is working through the information but isn't in a position to make any further comment."
North Melbourne was believed to be genuinely blindsided by the latest accusations and is said to be scrambling to find exactly "where the truth sits", according to Nine reporter Xander McGuire, via Twitter.
The call from the AFL to discuss the matters just came a day after co-captain Jy Simpkin fronted the media.
In an unfortunate case of timing is everything, the Yorta Yorta teammate had been talking up Thomas and expecting a re-focus back on the game to thrive this season after a strong summer at training.
"He had a really good off-season – he knuckled down," Simpkin said.
"He had a bit of a groin interruption, unfortunately, but he's working hard.
"He is in a great mindset at the moment, so I can't wait to see what he does this season."
The critical talks with the AFL on January 18 is expected to analyse the troubled Tasmanian's well-documented offences over the past 12 months.
The outcome of the hearing could place Thomas's promising footy career once again in jeopardy.
The AFL has the powers to deregister a player over off-the-field incidents that do harm to the image of the game, but at this stage there is no suggestion from the organisation that this is a serious consideration.
Thomas also comes out of contract at the end of the 2024 season that adds an extra layer to his shaky future.
The club has already stood down Thomas with pay on two occasions last year over back-to-back incidents from allegations of inappropriate behaviour made by a number of women, including his partner at the time that went to court.
Before facing a magistrate, he was asked to attend a respect and responsibility education program, which deals with accountability, remorse and behaviour change, to avoid being axed from the club.
North Melbourne chief executive, one of two female leaders at the club along with president Sonja Hood, said the Kangaroos had "made it clear to Tarryn that the future of his playing career at North Melbourne is in his hands".
The dynamic midfielder spent three weeks in the VFL earning the Kangaroos' trust again before later gaining a senior recall and starring in the back half of the 2023 season across 12 AFL matches.
Victoria Police had charged the Ormond resident under his full legal name of Tarryn Trindall with one count of threatening to distribute an intimate image in early 2023.
The charge was dropped in a Heidelberg court without criminal conviction after prosecutors agreed to downgrade the offence to using a carriage service to harass instead.
Thomas was granted a diversion and agreed to pay $1000 to charity.
In a 12 months full of misdemeanors, he was also charged with driving offences that included police stopping Thomas only to find he was behind the wheel with a suspended licence after being caught going through a red light after breaking up with his partner.
The Kangaroos had publicly defended their player after struggling to process the death of his grandmother.
"In Tarryn's situation, he has had some things going on in his life. It's a good reminder that sometimes what goes on life is much more important than what happens in a footy club," coach Alastair Clarkson said in August last year.