BRPD meeting with LSU players postponed

Shady’s Bar at 623 E. Boyd Drive south of the LSU campus was the site of an early Friday morning fight which involved several LSU football players, police said. Four nonteam members were treated for minor injuries. No charges had been filed as of Friday. Show caption
Shady’s Bar at 623 E. Boyd Drive south of the LSU campus was the site of an early Friday morning fight which involved several LSU football players, police said. Four nonteam members were treated for minor injuries. No charges had been filed as of Friday.

The meeting between Baton Rouge Police Department investigators and four LSU football players has been postponed until Tuesday morning, said police spokesman Sgt. Donald Stone.

Baton Rouge attorney Nathan Fisher, representing players Jordan Jefferson, Jarvis Landry, Chris Davenport and Josh Johns, has requested 24 hours to review the details of the case before his clients meet with investigators, Stone said.

Police asked the four players to come in for interviews after witnesses reported the men were involved in a fight outside of Shady’s bar about 1:30 a.m. Friday. Four men, none of whom are members of the LSU football team, were treated at a hospital for minor injuries sustained during the fight, police have said.

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From Sunday’s The Advocate

Scott Rabalais

Advocate Sportswriter

The Baton Rouge Police Department has asked to interview four LSU football players at 9 a.m. Monday at police headquarters about their alleged involvement in a bar fight early Friday, a police spokesman said Saturday night.

Those four are senior quarterback Jordan Jefferson, freshman wide receiver Jarvis Landry, sophomore offensive tackle Chris Davenport and sophomore linebacker Josh Johns, police spokesman Sgt. Donald Stone said.

Stone emphasized that the four players were being called in because witnesses have said they were involved in the fight early Friday at Shady’s bar, 623 E. Boyd Drive.

Stone did not rule out the possibility that arrests would be made soon, saying they might come anytime between early Monday to the end of next week.

“It’s still early in the investigation,” Stone said.

Stone said one individual associated with the fight likely would be booked with second-degree battery, a felony offense that carries a five-year prison sentence upon conviction.

LSU spokesman Herb Vincent said Saturday night that the university had no comment in response to the disclosure that four players were being asked to report to police headquarters Monday morning.

“When the facts of the incident become clear, we’ll take appropriate action if needed,” Vincent said.

Saturday afternoon, an angry LSU coach Les Miles and one of his players issued apologies for the involvement of an unspecified number of Tiger football players in the fight.

“The last couple of days have been miserable for us,” Miles said during a tense and somber news conference at the LSU football complex. “We have been involved in behavior that has been unacceptable to me and our team. Guys have broken team rules and violated team curfew.

“I personally want to apologize for the actions of my team,” Miles said, occasionally glancing at notes from behind a pair of reading glasses. “We’re very fortunate to represent a wonderful school and community, and we do so respectfully.

“I can assure you this will not happen again. This is a remorseful team here.”

Miles was joined at the lectern by the 22 members of the LSU football team’s Unity Council, a group of players who are chosen to act as team leaders.

The group included Jefferson, who did not speak during the news conference.

Players took no questions, though senior offensive guard Josh Dworaczyk gave a brief statement.

“I want to apologize for the team and our actions,” Dworaczyk said. “Our apologies extend to coach Miles and the coaching staff, to the community, to the fans and our alumni.

“From this point forward we will continue to change our direction and go out there and do what we do as a football team.”

Four people were treated at a hospital for minor injuries from the brawl, Stone said.

Investigators were still interviewing witnesses and the four men who allegedly were beaten, he said.

Stone did confirm that witnesses told police the fight started when a man in a truck honked his horn to move a crowd out of his path in the parking lot at Shady’s.

Stone said he did not know whether members of the crowd dragged the man from his truck or if he got out willingly to confront the crowd, or how the three other men who were treated for injuries became involved in the fight.

Miles said LSU players had a 10:30 p.m. curfew Thursday night and every member of the team was accounted for by that time. The football team was headquartered at LSU’s West Campus Apartments during preseason practice until Friday.

LSU sports information director Michael Bonnette later clarified Miles’ statement to indicate the players who went to the bar did so after being at their apartments for curfew.

There has been speculation that as many as 15 to 20 football players were present at the bar when the fight broke out.

Stone could not confirm the number of players involved and Miles did not say how many players broke curfew. The coach did say it was “a relatively large group.”

In addition to Jefferson, the only player confirmed to have been at the bar was senior offensive lineman T-Bob Hebert. Miles, in response to a question about Jefferson, indicated that Hebert was present.

Hebert is also on the Unity Council and attended the news conference.

Miles said he already has begun disciplining his players as a group over this incident.

“This was a team violation,” Miles said. “This was not just a guy. We ran them and are running them.”

Miles said players could be disciplined by losing playing time, but declined to give a timetable on when the matter could be wrapped up.

“I want to find out more of what went on,” Miles said.

Joe Alleva, LSU vice chancellor/director of athletics, who attended the news conference but did not address the media, released a statement shortly afterward:

“We will not tolerate student-athletes whose irresponsible actions tarnish the good name of a great university,” Alleva’s statement read. “LSU student-athletes are expected to behave with the understanding that they represent their school, their fellow students and the long history of this program, regardless of the time of day.

“Coach Miles has already begun taking disciplinary action. It is critical that we are deliberate in determining the facts surrounding this incident and as Coach Miles said, when the facts are clear, additional and appropriate disciplinary action will be taken if necessary.”

Despite his disappointment in his players, Miles said that “by and large,” he has enjoyed coaching this year’s team and enjoyed being around his players as people.

“As miserable as I am about this, as disappointed and as mad, I recognize I have a good group of men who understand the mistakes that were made,” Miles said.

“I suspect they will make the appropriate changes and I will instruct them along those lines, I promise.”

LSU is ranked No. 4 in the preseason Associated Press top 25, which was released Saturday. The Tigers also were ranked No. 4 in the USA Today coaches’ poll released earlier this month.

Advocate staff writers Katie Kennedy and Robert Stewart contributed to this report.