According to a spokesman for the Baton Rouge Police Department, there’s still “a good chance arrests will be made” following last Friday’s early morning bar fight involving at least four LSU football players.
Those players — Jordan Jefferson, Chris Davenport, Josh Johns and Jarvis Landry — met with authorities yesterday. No arrests followed.
Chief Dewayne White told The New Orleans Times-Picayune that the investigation is very much moving forward. “We are still on a fact-finding mission. We still have a multitude of witnesses to interview. This case is far from over.”
Yesterday, police admitted that the victims in the fight — who wound up going to the hospital — are telling one story while the players have shared a version of events.
Police spokesman Sgt. Don Stone told The Shreveport Times: “We’re looking at charging someone with simple battery and/or second-degree battery. If the evidence supports the allegations made against these four individuals or anyone else that may come up, yes, someone will be charged. We have physical evidence that people were beaten. We have medical reports. We do have outstanding charges at this time.”
Some other items of note:
* The investigation could take a week to 10 days to wrap up, according to police. That certainly brings the four players’ availability for next Saturday’s matchup with #3 Oregon into question.
* Les Miles is working on a backup plan for that game, should Jefferson and the others be unavailable. “We’re preparing to play those guys that would expect to play, and yeah, we’re preparing for if a happenstance would occur.” Great quote. Jarrett Lee split first-team reps with Jefferson during yesterday’s scrimmage.
* The BRPD’s chief was asked if his department would be using the same amount of resources if the suspects were not LSU football players. “Unequivocally, yes,” White said. “We have an individual who has three fractured vertebrae. We owe it to that citizen and every citizen in Baton Rouge to do whatever necessary to bring the perpetrator of this crime to justice.” Three fractured vertebrae? That puts this matter in a bit different light, doesn’t it?
* Despite early reports that the fight had racial overtones, none of the LSU players interviewed — three black, one white — reported racial slurs being used.
* Miles has forced his team to do some extra running as punishment for last week’s curfew violation (as many as 50 players were believed to be out celebrating the end of preseason camp). He said yesterday that if he had more details, he might dole out more punishment. “I have a real layman’s understanding of what occurred as best I can tell you. … There’s a great number of guys in here that did nothing — that were in their beds and doing the right things. And then there are those guys that were really not involved that were there. For that, this team’s going to pay a terrible price.”