LSU's Jeremy Hill to meet with judge Monday
A lawyer for suspended LSU running back Jeremy Hill has arranged a meeting with a judge in Baton Rouge on Monday, when Hill could learn whether he'll remain on probation under terms allowing him to play football.
District Attorney Hillar Moore said Sunday night that state District Judge Bonnie Jackson granted defense lawyer Marci Blaize's request to move a probation review hearing up from Aug. 16.
Hill, who was LSU's top rusher last season, was caught on video punching a man outside a bar last spring. Hill pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery - a violation of his probation from an earlier misdemeanor.
The purpose of Monday's hearing is for Jackson to review more restrictive terms she attached to Hill's probation - including a curfew and bar ban - in May. Jackson also has received a probation revocation motion from prosecutors, and while she has not yet set the date to hear that, it is within the judge's discretion to rule during her review Monday that Hill won't be returning to jail for his late-April probation violation.
If Jackson makes such a ruling, Hill's fate at LSU will be up to coach Les Miles, whose team starts practice Monday.
Blaize said Sunday night that Hill's probation review hearing was moved up to Monday not because of LSU's practice schedule, but because she had a conflict in her schedule on Aug. 16. Blaize said her primary goal is to keep Hill out of jail so he can remain an LSU student and register for class, not so he can make it to football practice.
After LSU players reported for August camp on Sunday, Miles indicated, as he has previously, that he did not expect to take any action on Hill's reinstatement until after it was clear that Hill would remain out of jail. He had hoped to have word by Aug. 16, when a status hearing in the matter had been scheduled. Depending on what Jackson decides on Monday, Miles could decide Hill's fate at LSU as earlier.
Miles has otherwise declined to comment on Hill's legal trouble and could not be reached for comment on Sunday night.
Currently, Hill is serving two overlapping two-year probation terms.
Hill's earlier probation stemmed from his January 2012 guilty plea to a misdemeanor stemming from his sexual relationship with a then-14-year-old girl at his high school. He received the second term, along with a second six-month suspended sentence, after his misdemeanor battery plea last month.
After last month's plea, state District Judge Michael Erwin, at the victim's request, ordered Hill and a co-defendant, Robert Bayardo, not to comment publicly about the case.
Prosecutors said the victim, an LSU student, did not ask for jail time. He requested only that Hill and Bayardo to share his $750 in medical expenses, not have any contact with him or his family and not comment publicly about the incident on social media or any forum.
The judge accepted those terms.
Bayardo said he did not know Hill and he is not an LSU student. He had no prior criminal record and received one-year of probation.
Jackson's restrictions on Hill's initial probation came in May. Those included a 9 p.m.-6 a.m. curfew and a ban from bars. Erwin ruled that those conditions would apply to his new probationary period, but added he would give Hill the flexibility to stay out later than 9 p.m. when his football schedule demands it, should he be reinstated to the team.
Hill also has been ordered to undergo anger management counseling and perform 50 hours of community service.
Hill rushed for 755 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2012, his freshman season. Hill got increased playing time after season-opening starter Alfred Blue went out with a season-ending knee injury in LSU's third game. Blue has returned this season, as has junior running back Kenny Hilliard.