Cab driver charged in player's death

Published Aug. 23, 2011 1:00 a.m. ET

A cab driver has been charged with manslaughter for allegedly providing the drugs that resulted in the death of Alabama offensive lineman Aaron Douglas.

Fernandina Beach Police said in a news release that Rodney Young Odum was arrested late Monday and charged with manslaughter and the sale/delivery of a controlled substance. An autopsy report found Douglas died May 12 as a result of multiple drugs found in his system.

Police chief James Hurley says Douglas rode to a party in a cab driven by Odum. Hurley says Odum either sold or gave him two prescription Methadone pills during the trip.

Hurley says Odum ''reportedly had a reputation as a mobile drug dealer.'' Odum was jailed on $50,000 bond.

Alabama coach Nick Saban said the arrest was a positive but didn't make dealing with Douglas' death easier.

''Nothing can erase the pain of what happened with Aaron,'' Saban said Tuesday evening. ''It was tough on our team when you lose a comrade and lose someone that's a part of your team. Certainly I think that at least now the person who did the wrongdoing is being held accountable for it, which is a positive thing. But nothing can really make that wrong right.

''It is good that maybe this person will be convicted and not be able to do this type of stuff to other young people. I'm hopeful that we can crack down on all that in all areas so we wouldn't have that type of problem in our country with young people.''


Authorities have charged four people with allowing underage drinking at the party.

Douglas was a freshman All-American at Tennessee before transferring to a junior college. He enrolled at Alabama in January and was competing for a starting job at left tackle.