Odell Beckham Jr. is already in trouble with LSU and the NCAA for handing out wads of cash to players after the NCAA football championship on Monday night.
Now he's in trouble with police, too.
An arrest warrant was issued for the former Giants receiver on Thursday morning, the New Orleans Police Department confirmed to ESPN, accusing Beckham of simple battery of a police officer. The charge is based on a video that showed him slapping a male officer on the butt in LSU's post-game locker room.
According to Nola.com, a law enforcement source said they originally wanted to charge Beckham with misdemeanor sexual battery, but that was dismissed by a judge. That charge could have carried a maximum penalty of six months in jail.
The 27-year-old Beckham, who played college football at LSU and is now a member of the Cleveland Browns, was caught on multiple videos celebrating with players in the locker room at the Superdome in New Orleans after the Tigers defeated Clemson to win the national championship. In one video, a police officer is shown speaking to LSU offensive lineman Damien Lewis. The officer reportedly was trying to enforce a ban on smoking indoors and was telling LSU players -- many of whom were smoking cigars -- that anyone caught smoking was subject to arrest.
Odell really spanked the cop 🤣 pic.twitter.com/KVNijqK3bM- Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) January 15, 2020
He also appeared, in the video, to be checking what some of the LSU players were drinking, presumably since most of them were too young to consume alcohol.
At the end of that video, though, Beckham can first be seen staring at the back of the officer. He then hit the officer on the buttocks. When the officer turned around, Beckham had what appeared to be an animated conversation with him, until the officer walked away.
According to Nola.com, "simple battery" in Louisiana is defined as "battery committed without the consent of the victim." It can also carry a penalty of six months in jail and a maximum fine of $1,000. But it is considered less serious than a misdemeanor sexual battery charge, and as Beckham is a first-time offender, his record could be expunged.
The Cleveland Browns issued a statement about the incident on Thursday morning: "We are aware of the incident and have been in touch with Odell and his representatives on the matter. They are cooperating with the proper authorities to appropriately address the situation."
Meanwhile, Beckham is still in less serious trouble for handing out cash to LSU players after the game. LSU first claimed the money was fake. Hours later, the university issued a statement that it was "apparent cash" and said it was "in contact with the NCAA and the SEC" because "some of our student-athletes may have been placed in a compromising position."
LSU quarterback Joe Burrow later claimed in an interview with ESPN that the money was real. Paying players for a performance is obviously against NCAA rules and could result in punishment both for the LSU football program and for any players that still have eligibility remaining and took Beckham's cash.