The New Orleans Police Department could withdraw the arrest warrant issued for Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. as early as this weekend after an officer signed an affidavit saying he did not want to pursue charges, according to a law enforcement source familiar with the developments.
Beckham was potentially facing a misdemeanor charge of simple battery for slapping the buttocks of a Superdome police officer in the LSU locker room after the Tigers’ national championship victory over Clemson on Monday in New Orleans.
Beckham, 27, is from New Orleans and played for LSU.
NOLA.com was the first to report that the officer decided he did not want to press charges.
Video surfaced this week showing Beckham slapping the officer during the locker room celebration. According to records obtained by NOLA.com, the officer had been telling LSU players to put out cigars in the locker room.
According to the law enforcement source, the Superdome officer said in his affidavit that he was a commissioned law officer who chose on his own not to file an arrest. The source expects the NOPD to withdraw the warrant as a result — which would effectively end the case against Beckham. The NOPD has not yet commented on its plans.
No case has been instituted against Beckham because no arrest has been made. And since it is not a felony charge, the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s office is not involved in the decision at this stage.
“We are aware of the incident and have been in touch with Odell and his representatives on the matter,” the Browns said in a statement issued Thursday. “They are cooperating with the proper authorities to appropriately address the situation.”
Beckham was also captured on video passing out money to several LSU players immediately after the Tigers’ 42-25 victory.
The university’s athletic department issued a statement Wednesday, saying it was aware of video showing “apparent cash” being given to players by Beckham and that it has been in contact with the NCAA and the Southeastern Conference regarding the matter.