Police: LSU players involved in shooting acted in self-defense

LSU Tigers running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (22) runs against Rice Owls defensive lineman Parker Hanusa (93) at Tiger Stadium on Nov. 17.Photo Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Sports Xchange

Two LSU football players involved in a fatal incident this weekend were the victims of an attempted robbery who acted in self-defense by shooting the man who was allegedly trying to rob them, Baton Rouge police said Sunday morning.

Police spokesman Sgt. L’Jean McKneely said in a statement that sophomore running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire and linebacker Jared Small were attempting to sell an electronic item in Baton Rouge (La.) when the 18-year-old man, Kobe Johnson, pulled out a weapon and demanded their belongings.

One of the players then pulled out a handgun and fired multiple times at Johnson, who died at the scene, McKneely said.

Edwards-Helaire and Small were questioned by police before being released without arrest.

Attorneys for the players previously told the Baton Rouge Advocate that their actions were in self-defense.

LSU athletic director Joe Alleva addressed the shooting in a statement Saturday.

“We have today been in constant contact with law enforcement regarding this terrible situation. Right now, our concern is for the safety and well-being of our student-athletes,” Alleva said. “They have been involved in a traumatic incident, and we have made our counselors available to assist immediately. All questions regarding the investigation should be directed to law enforcement at this time.”

Edwards-Helaire has 136 carries for 626 yards and seven touchdowns for the Tigers, who meet Central Florida in the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 1 (1 p.m. ET).

A true freshman, Small has appeared in four games this season.