Law expert weighs in on controversial 'LSU fan assault' video
POSTED: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 - 4:52pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 - 6:02pm
Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — Southern Law Vice Chancellor Russell Jones was appalled when he saw the video of an incapacitated LSU fan getting taunted and poked by Alabama fans in New Orleans after the BCS National Championship.
“It was horrible,” said Jones. “It was really horrible. I think we need to send a message to that young man, (and) the young people who engaged in the activity and let them know it is not acceptable… that is not morally acceptable.”
In the video, Crimson Tide fans mess with an LSU Tiger fan who is clearly passed out in the Krystal Burger on Bourbon Street - they poke him, put garbage on him, and towards the end of the video, a red-clad fan took things to an extreme.
“The person who got over him and kneeled over him and did the very lewd act, he can be charged with simple battery,” stated Jones.
However, he's not the only one in the video who could be in trouble with the law.
“The people that push trash on him, that could be battery because it’s offensive touching - an intentional touching, an offensive or harmful touching without the consent of the person,”
Jones says even the sleeping Purple and Gold fan was in the wrong.
“Public drunkenness may be a proper charge, which is disturbing the peace.”
As for the folks standing around watching the display, Jones says they're off the hook, but it doesn't make it right.
“That's troublesome that you would stand around and watch this, but there's no legal duty.”
His hope is that people will learn from this situation moving forward.
“People will go to certain extremes, and we need to let society know that this is simply not the way we act.”
While the New Orleans Police Department says a victim has to come forward for them to launch an investigation, Jones says the district attorney can move forward with one if he has enough evidence against the fans in the video.