NFL running back Adrian Peterson turned himself in to authorities

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(CNN) — NFL running back Adrian Peterson turned himself in to authorities in Texas early Saturday, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office said.

Shortly after, Peterson was freed on a $15,000 bail, authorities said.

A grand jury indicted him on a felony charge of injury to a child, spurring the county sheriff’s office to issue a warrant for his arrest.

Authorities didn’t divulge details Friday about what led to the charge.

But Peterson’s lawyer said the “charged conduct involves using a switch to spank his son” — explaining that his client did so while doling out discipline “much like “he experienced as a child growing up in east Texas.”

“Adrian never intended to harm his son and deeply regrets the unintentional injury,” Rusty Hardin said

He described him as a loving father.

“(Peterson) will continue to insist on his innocence of any intended wrongdoing,” the lawyer said.

Hardin claims that his client has “cooperated fully with authorities and voluntarily testified before the grand jury for several hours.”

“Adrian will address the charges with the same respect and responsiveness he has brought to this inquiry from its beginning,” the lawyer said.

Right after news broke of the indictment, the Vikings released a statement saying they were “in the process of gathering information regarding the legal situation.”

The team came back a short time later to announce that its offensive catalyst has been deactivated for Sunday’s game against the New England Patriots.

According to Texas law, a person can be convicted of an injury to a child offense if they are proven to have caused bodily or mental injury “intentionally, knowingly, recklessly or with criminal negligence” or causing such harm by omission. A child, by this definition, must be 14 years old or younger.

The alleged criminal offense took place in Montgomery County, which is north of Houston.

The 29-year-old Peterson grew up in Palestine, Texas, which is 150 miles north of Houston and 100 miles southeast of Dallas.

A running back for the Vikings since 2007, he rushed for 75 yards in his team’s season-opening 34-6 rout of the St. Louis Rams.

Last year, his 2-year-old son died after allegedly being abused by another man.

Authorities in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, found that child unresponsive, and later determined he’d suffered injuries to his head consistent with abuse.

News of Peterson’s indictment casts another shadow over the NFL, which is reeling from the fallout over then-Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice allegedly punching his then-fiancee Janay Palmer in a casino elevator.


  • Kari

    If you have to use a “stick” to discipline a child, you’re failing as an adult. How can people do this to a little child? You’re essentially telling a child that you’re not only bigger, but using a weapon against someone so much smaller than you, is fair. It’s so sad that children live through this type of parental so-called discipline. That’s just terrorism on so many levels. Just because your parents beat you, and you think you turned out okay doesn’t mean it is an okay thing to do. You have so many other disciplinary “options.” Violence begets violence. I’m not talking about a smack on the butt with your hands, but breaking a switch off a tree and hitting your child with it several times all over their body, is nothing short of “your” lack of control. What are you teaching your child… how can you do this to a child that you’re supposed to love and protect? I was a very strict parent… but I never ever went out and pulled a stick off a tree and beat my child with it. He turned out to be the most wonderful husband, father, and son, possible. He’s a fantastic parent. And he doesn’t use violence to discipline his children. They know to mind, without question. Time Out!

  • Michael

    Sometimes kids just cause their parents to blow a fuse. Even the best parents. It happens. When that parent has an occupation as brutal and violent like AD’s is bad things happen. I’m not a believer in all spanking is wrong, or a switch in this case, since I’ve received both as a child and I’ve never been in any real trouble. Time out didn’t do jack with me. The difference is my mom and dad weren’t NFL athletic freaks like AD is. Gotta stay away from the head though, that’s just wrong.

  • Jones

    Look, people, what’s America coming to? What’s all this $$ driven righteousness all about? The man disciplined his child. Period. So, now what? what’s the TV topic today? Terminate his contract, ban him from his job? I mean, where is the ‘National Coalition for Men’ ? The men who play in the NFL are nothing but human beings with women and children who could be vile, vicious, manipulative and very conniving. Remember that. The only reason this is ‘big’ news is because the dude is a ‘public’ figure. We have so many dysfunctional young men in our society because their fathers never really squared with them about life, and yes, even if it meant getting an azz whooping. Go to the prisons and jails and 95%of the male inmate population suffer from this syndrome. What’s the role of the man in the home lately? women are becoming so dominant and over bearing on the American family and that’s a tragedy. Thanks to congress and the women liberation agenda. No wonder we have a significant gay population these days. Ridiculous.

  • Jones

    Ok, now what? terminate his contract, Vikings release him and well, here we go again. What’s America coming to? see, that’s why we have a growing gay population in this country because boys are now being turned into little girls. where in the hell is the ‘National coalition for men’? Men (straights) are becoming the new minority in this country. Prison and jails are filled with young men who never had the benefit of an ‘imposing’ father. Adrian Peterson disciplined his child and that’s it. Don’t get me started on this one.

  • Jones

    Ok, now what? The guy is dismissed by the Vikings to save face, the NFL has to ban him to appease the women, the media has to go on a preaching spree about child abuse and the anchors have to wear a face of concern to show their aggravation. where is the national coalition for men? No wonder we have such a growing population of sexual deviants in this country. you know, the gays. More men are in jail and prisons because they didn’t have an imposing father like Adrian Peterson. what in the world is America coming to? Men(straights) in this county are becoming a minority.we have a situation where the woman is the head of the family(tahnks to congress), has become so imposing and over bearing because they have minders, you know the police and what not looking out for them. WE NEED A NATIONAL COALITION FOR MEN and we need to have a lobby group to cater to the men alone minus the gays.

  • Jones

    Ray Lewis(Homicide) needs to shut up completely. Donte Stallworth(Manslaughter) needs to zip up and you TV personalities need to tone down the rhetoric. I’m sure so many of you whnt employees have children who are boys. I hope they don’t come around to football games holding pom-poms because you were such ‘good’ parents. Most well meaning men in every sphere of life had to deal with an imposing father and thanks to that dad, they are now real men, even Lebron James, even with his hatred for his father. All his ‘greatness’ is because he tried to prove his father wrong.

  • jones

    And I also hope Judge Cleveland is not watching the news to justify her bench advocacy for her man issues with her decisions especially over this stuff. She’s locked up more young men than any other judge I know in Alabama with cases that are handled by very incompetent ‘public defenders’ whose only job is not to argue any case but do plea deals and expedite everybody through the system. God bless the men. We’ll be fine.

  • Tim

    I’m calling BS on this one.. Guy appears to want his son to grow up with discipline and know there are consequences for lying , stealing ect..

  • Gomez Olivas Hernandez

    football- NFL & College are nothing more than THUG Havens!! These idiots need to get a real job for once in their life!

  • Dianne V

    Really people Come on get a gripe until you know the details Please refrain from making comments that you do not even know for sure what how why I have seem more children that needed a Switch then perhaps we would not have so many jails and prisons full We need FULL TIME BIBLE BELIEVING AND BIBLE TEACHING PARENTS then we will have a decent country again(this is in regards to Adrien Peterson

  • Jones

    And why is the NFL and teams suspending players before they are tried in a court of law? How does it work in this country nowadays? You are innocent till proven guilty. This NFL boss is nothing short of anything. He needs to go. Let the players be given due process before the NFL mets out suspension. Its someone’s life we are talking about not appeasing women.

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