Felony battery charge won't be filed against Vikings' Everson Griffen
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Everson Griffen isn't in the clear yet, but he won't face felony charges.
The Minnesota Vikings' rookie defensive end was arrested for felony battery on Monday afternoon after a routine traffic stop ended with him fleeing police and allegedly attacking an officer before a Taser shot subdued him.
However, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office on Tuesday night said the case has been handed over to the city attorney's office for misdemeanor consideration because the D.A. "did not believe the evidence rose to a felony filing."
The decision was based on the absence of injury and Griffen's lack of criminal history. The Los Angeles City Attorney's Office has its own elected prosecutor who handles misdemeanor charges.
Griffen, 23, was released on $50,000 bail early Tuesday morning, roughly nine hours after the arrest. His initial hearing is set for Feb. 25.
Whether charges are filed or not, the former University of Southern California standout did nothing to dispel his irresponsible reputation in recent days. He also was arrested early Saturday morning in Hollywood for being drunk in public.
An NFL spokesman said on Tuesday afternoon the league is "looking into" both situations for possible violations of the personal-conduct policy.
Monday's incident began about 4 p.m. Pacific time after Griffen was pulled over for multiple traffic violations and refused to be handcuffed or go to jail, according to court documents obtained by the Pioneer Press.
Griffen then "faced an officer in a threatening manner," was tased twice and "grabbed the victim in the crotch and squeezed," per the documents. The officer had soreness but no injuries and refused to be examined, the Pioneer Press reported.
"We are aware of (Monday)'s alleged incident involving Everson Griffen," Vikings spokesman Jeff Anderson said in a statement on Tuesday morning. "At this time, the team is gathering all the facts and we'll withhold any further comment."