Assistant District Attorney Bruce Lillie today released this statement announcing the state is dropping a misdemeanor assault charge against Panthers linebacker Jon Beason:
In the matter of State of North Carolina v. Jon Beason 09cr257575
After a review of the thorough investigation conducted by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, the Mecklenburg County District Attorney’s Office has determined that there is not sufficient evidence to prosecute this matter. The District Attorney’s Office will not proceed on cases where there is not a likelihood of proving a defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt at trial. The evidence in this case does not rise to that standard.
Evidence in this case would show that Greg Frye was struck in the face at the Uptown Cabaret Club early in the morning of November 16th, 2009. Mr. Frye made a statement to police that Jon Beason became irate at the club after comments made by the Mr. Frye. Mr. Frye maintains that Mr. Beason struck him in the face. Mr. Frye made a call to 911 within minutes of the event and told officers called to the scene that a Carolina Panther player named “Beasley” had hit him. Officers did observe some injuries to Mr. Frye’s face at this time.
Other than Mr. Frye’s statement, police were not able to obtain evidence that Mr. Beason was the assailant. Police made contact with numerous people who were in the club when the incident occurred. No one indicated they saw Beason strike Frye. No witnesses have come forward to say they saw Beason strike Frye.
Mr. Beason was interviewed by CMPD and denied striking Mr. Frye. Beason said that he asked to have Frye removed from the VIP section in the club after Frye made accusations about Beason. According to Beason, as he was leaving the club, he saw Frye. Beason said that he and Frye exchanged words and bumped chests. Beason said he was pushed away from Frye and left the club.
A second witness, John Simmons, who was with Beason, told CMPD that he put himself between Beason and Frye and that Beason could not have struck Frye. Simmons told CMPD that Frye attempted to strike Beason and missed. Simmons said that Beason drew back to strike Frye but that he (Simmons) hooked Beason’s arm and pushed Beason back and out of the club. Mr. Simmons said Beason never struck Frye but that he did see a man in a white long sleave shirt (not Beason) strike Frye. Simmons indicated he did not know this man.
Several witnesses indicated that throughout the evening Mr. Frye informed people that he was a player for the Carolina Panthers and that he displayed an NFL ID card to bolster this claim. While inside the Uptown Cabaret Mr. Frye told workers he played for the Panthers. While being interviewed by CMPD officers after the incident, Mr. Frye claimed to play for the Panthers. When specifically asked by CMPD if he was a member of the Carolina Panthers team Frye sad he used to play for the Panthers and later said he was on the practice squad several years ago. Subsequent investigation reveals that Frye has never been employed or associated in any fashion with the Carolina Panthers. CMPD Officers indicate that Mr. Frye was intoxicated when interviewed at the scene.
Due to the insufficiency of the evidence outlined above, the undersigned Assistant District Attorney does not feel it is appropriate to proceed to trial in this matter.
Assistant District Attorney
Gregory C. Frye has also filed a civil suit related to the same Nov. 15 incident.
Here is a statement from Frye's lawyer, regarding that lawsuit in light of today's news:
Click here to read statement from Frye's lawyer.
- Doug Miller