CONROE, Texas — Suspended Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson admitted to court officials that he had “smoked a little weed” and was likely to fail a drug test — and now he faces a new possible arrest.
Peterson made the admission Wednesday, when he made his first court appearance on a child abuse charge, according to court documents filed in Conroe on Thursday.
As a result, prosecutors asked a judge to revoke the $15,000 bail that Peterson had earlier posted and authorize that he be arrested anew.
Peterson, 29, was indicted by a grand jury on a charge that he recklessly or negligently injured his son when he spanked him with a switch, a small tree branch stripped of leaves. The incident allegedly occurred last May 18 when the boy — who lives with his mother — was visiting Peterson at his home north of Houston.
When Peterson was in court Wednesday on the child abuse charge, he was led out at one point to provide a urine sample — something many defendants are required to do.
According to the motion filed Thursday, Peterson admitted while he was submitting to the test that he has recently smoked pot.
“During this process, the defendant admitted … that he smoked a little weed,” prosecutors wrote in the motion.
Peterson’s attorney, Rusty Hardin, released a statement saying the bond case can’t be heard until it’s decided whether Judge Kelly Case will be recused, and that the hearing in that matter will likely be next week. Hardin also said the motion to revoke Peterson’s bond will come up only when it’s known which judge will hear the case, and the defense will respond at that time. In the meantime, Peterson remains free on bond.
Peterson’s indictment was another black eye for the NFL. It came on the heels of the public airing of a surveillance videotape that showed Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice punching and knocking out his then-fiancee in a casino elevator. The Ravens cut Rice, and the NFL has wrestled with a public relations nightmare ever since over questions of how they’ve handled cases of players accused of domestic violence.
After initially concluding that Peterson could keep playing, the Vikings reversed course on Sept. 17 and suspended him with pay until the case is resolved.
Getting back on the field means getting this criminal case is resolved. And even if that happens, the suggestion that he had been smoking pot could affect any potential return to the game.
Peterson has not yet entered a plea in the child abuse case.
Hardin has defended Peterson, who wowed football fans when he returned from torn knee ligaments in a little more than eight months to rush for 2,097 yards in 2012, as a loving father who disciplined his son and may have inadvertently injured him.