NOPD arrests suspect in sexual assault of LSU fan - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Bond set for 'Bama fan in video accused of sexual battery

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Brian Downing, 32 (Courtesy: WWL-TV) Brian Downing, 32 (Courtesy: WWL-TV)
Still images of the cell phone video capturing what authorities say was a sexual assault on a passed out Tiger fan. Still images of the cell phone video capturing what authorities say was a sexual assault on a passed out Tiger fan.
Brian Downing (Source: Orleans Parish Sheriffs Office) Brian Downing (Source: Orleans Parish Sheriffs Office)

Bond had been set for the Crimson Tide fan accused of performing a sexual act on a passed-out LSU fan that was seen in a now-infamous video that has gone viral on the internet.

Authorities believe the Alabama committed sexual battery on the LSU fan in a French Quarter restaurant after the BCS Championship game.

32-year-old Brian Downing was by booked late Thursday night New Orleans Sex Crimes detectives on one count of sexual battery and one count of obscenity. Sexual battery is a felony. His bond was set at $10,000 on Friday morning.

The NOPD Sex Crimes Unit found out Tuesday about the video showing people dressed in Alabama attire messing around with the apparently passed out LSU fan.

Downing has been identified in media reports as the fan seen in an amateur video rubbing his genitals on the neck of a Tigers supporter inside the Krystal restaurant on Bourbon Street the night of the BCS championship game.

Police said LSU and Alabama University campus police helped them collect information and evidence needed to get a warrant for Downing's arrest.

Downing is a second cousin of Russell County, Ala., Sheriff Heath Taylor, who earlier Thursday had said Downing was on his way from Alabama to New Orleans to surrender.

Taylor told The Associated Press that he learned from other family members Thursday morning that Downing had been identified as the man shown exposing himself and then simulating a sex act above the head of an apparently unconscious man in an LSU-purple shirt. Taylor said he had not seen the video or asked Downing about the case.

After hearing from his relatives, Taylor said, he called Downing's dad and told him to bring him to the sheriff's office in Phenix City, Ala. He said he then called New Orleans police to ask whether they wanted him to jail and extradite Downing or send him to New Orleans to surrender. "New Orleans made that call," he said.

Taylor said he did not speak to Downing. "I gave his attorney the card with the detective's name on it and cell number."

The relationship was first reported by the Ledger-Enquirer of Columbus, Ga., which is about nine miles east-northeast from Phenix City.

Taylor told WBRC anchor Beth Shelburne on Thursday that "Brian, this is out of character for him, but even being out of character, you have consequences for what you do, and your family isn't immune to that, and you have to pay for those consequences."

In other developments Thursday, a man calling himself 'Sam from Louisiana' called in to the Finebaum radio show to discuss the incident in the Bourbon Street Krystal's after the BCS National Championship. "I just want to start off by saying I apologize to everyone for getting so drunk out of my mind that I didn't know what I was doing," says tells Finebaum. "So, 'Sam,'are you saying to this audience that you are the alleged victim in the teabagging incident?" the host asks. "Yes sir," replies the caller, who went on to say that he is embarassed and his girlfriend won't talk to him anymore.

'Sam' says he has contacted police.

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 Copyright 2012 KSLA, with contributions from The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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