Las Vegas police said the popular retired N.F.L. running back smelled of alcohol when they found him asleep in a car on Tuesday morning. His lawyers disputed that he was drunk.
Marshawn Lynch, the former Seattle Seahawks running back, disputed the police account of his arrest on suspicion of driving under the influence in Las Vegas on Tuesday morning. Through his attorneys, Lynch denied driving while intoxicated.
Lynch faces a misdemeanor D.U.I. and three other charges after police said they found him asleep in a parked car. The police said in their report that Lynch, 36, was asleep behind the wheel of a car on a street north of the Las Vegas Strip near the Stratosphere hotel-casino about 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.
They said the vehicle, a black sports car, was turned off, noticeably dented, and missing the rim and tire on the driver side front wheel. The wheels on the rear driver’s side and the rim and tire on the front passenger side were nearly detached, according to the report.
On Thursday, police released body cam footage from the arresting officers that appeared to show the interaction. It concluded with one officer dragging Lynch out of the car by his arm before police handcuffed him.
Responding officers did not see Lynch operating the vehicle.
A Las Vegas Police officer wrote in the arrest report that he identified Lynch in the driver’s seat and that Lynch periodically fell asleep as he was interviewed. The report described Lynch’s eyes as bloodshot and watery and said the officer smelled alcohol on his breath and in the vehicle. Lynch, who was wearing only one shoe, told police that he stole the vehicle, but said he had not been drinking and did not use drugs, according to the report.
Lynch was arrested about 8 a.m. after he refused to cooperate with police attempts to administer field sobriety tests, according to the report, which added that corrections officers restrained him in order to draw a blood sample at the Las Vegas jail. Police said Lynch did not require medical attention.
In a statement, Lynch’s lawyers, David Chesnoff and Richard Schonfeld, disputed the charges.
“Marshawn was not pulled over for a D.U.I.,” the lawyers said. “Rather the vehicle was safely parked and not in operation. We are confident that when all evidence is presented, this will not be a D.U.I. under Nevada law. Marshawn appreciates and is thankful for everyone’s concern and support.”
Lynch was charged with a misdemeanor of driving under the influence, as well as failure to surrender proof of security, driving an unregistered vehicle and failure to drive in a travel lane, according to Las Vegas Municipal Court records. He was released after posting $3,381 bail.
Lynch’s charges came well after a stretch in which five N.F.L. players were arrested in Las Vegas during a six-month span from late 2021 to early 2022.
Lynch was selected in the first round of the 2007 N.F.L. draft and amassed 85 rushing touchdowns and more than 10,000 rushing yards in across 12 seasons with the Buffalo Bills, Seahawks and Oakland Raiders. He is most remembered for his six-season tenure from 2010-15 in Seattle, where he won a Super Bowl, earned four Pro Bowl selections and earned his nickname, Beast Mode, during a highlight-reel run play against the New Orleans Saints during the 2010 N.F.C. wild-card playoff round.
He last played football in 2019, and the N.F.L. Players Association last October named Lynch its first chief brand ambassador, helping give insight to current players about how to manage their money and marketing.
Lynch’s court date is scheduled for Dec. 7, according to online records.