A video that shows NFL star Odell Beckham Jr. slapping the backside of a New Orleans police officer in a locker room after Louisiana State University’s national championship football victory Monday night has led to a warrant for his arrest on a charge of simple battery.
A spokesman for the police department, Aaron Looney, confirmed to PEOPLE that the warrant was issued Thursday.
The video shows a uniformed male officer admonishing a member of LSU’s team, whose players lit up cigars after beating Clemson in the national title game and then were told that anyone smoking inside the Mercedes-Benz Superdome was subject to arrest, reports NOLA.com.
Behind the officer, Beckham, an alum of the school who now plays for the NFL’s Cleveland Browns, is clearly seen delivering a swat to the officer’s backside after flicking an unidentified object in the officer’s direction.
The two then engage in a brief verbal confrontation, but the video does not capture what was said between them.
OBJ wasn’t gonna let that officer spoil the fun.. told him to get the gat. 🤣 pic.twitter.com/sWoWj53r42— 🕊 (@wannabjoyful) January 14, 2020
The police spokesman said he was unable to confirm any other details about the incident at this time.
No arrests occurred during the team’s locker room celebration.
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Authorities initially sought a warrant charging Beckham with misdemeanor sexual battery of the officer, but it was downgraded to simple battery after a judge refused to approve the initial request, a source told NOLA.com.
Louisiana law defines the lesser crime as “battery committed without the consent of the victim,” according to the outlet, with a maximum penalty if convicted of six months in prison and a $1,000 fine.
Statement regarding Odell Beckham Jr. incident: pic.twitter.com/7cN3jOLCj6— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) January 16, 2020
The Cleveland Browns issued a statement that reads: “We are aware of the incident and we have been in touch with Odell and his representatives on the matter. They are cooperating with the proper authorities to appropriately address the situation.”