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Drugs found during May traffic stop just one of Marshall Henderson’s spring run-ins with the law

Jul 12, 2013, 8:15 PM EDT

In the aftermath of Ole Miss’ decision to suspend guard Marshall Henderson indefinitely, some wondered what triggered the school’s move. Multiple outlets reported that failed drug tests led to the disciplinary measure, with Ole Miss even reaching out to Chris Herren in an attempt to help Henderson.

The conversation between the two finally occurred on Thursday, and if anything it’s clear that Henderson’s trek to recovery won’t necessarily be a speedy one.

On Thursday it was reported by the Wall Street Journal that during a traffic stop on May 4, Oxford, Miss. police found small amounts of both marijuana and cocaine in Henderson’s car. Henderson was pulled over on “suspicion of speeding” according to the police report.

Henderson was pulled over May 4 on suspicion of speeding, and Oxford Police officer Shane Fortner smelled marijuana in Henderson’s vehicle, according to the police report. Henderson gave Fortner a bag containing “a small nugget of marijuana,” according to Fortner’s report, and a search by a police dog turned up a clear plastic bag that contained “a small amount of what appeared to be cocaine,” a report from another officer, Mark Hodges, said.

Hodges’s report notes that the district attorney wouldn’t prosecute if the bag contained less than one-tenth of a gram of cocaine.

While he was cited for no proof of liability insurance, no other charges were filed against Henderson. Unfortunately for Henderson this was not his only run-in with law enforcement during the spring, as he was stopped on two separate occasions for playing loud music in his car.

Young drivers playing loud music is something that happens quite often these days, but Henderson nearly landed in jail due to his move to turn the music back up following one of the stops.

However, after he was given his citations, [Oxford (Miss.) police officer Jacob] Abel said in his report that he had to threaten Henderson that he”d “take him to jail.”

“After this Mr. Henderson began to drive off. He turned his music back up to the same level when I stopped him. I yelled for him to stop and after he did, I approached him and explained to him that if he turned his music back up I was going to stop him and take him to jail. He complied, turned his music down and then drove off again,” Abel wrote.

In regards to the drugs, Henderson’s past issues with substance abuse have been well-publicized by this point. But to make this a conversation about the likelihood of Henderson suiting up for Ole Miss next season ignores the most important aspect of this saga.

How much help does Henderson need? That’s a tough question to answer for an outsider, but the fact that the staff would reach out to Herren exhibits a certain level of concern they have for Henderson’s well-being. There will be a time to discuss Henderson’s impact on the basketball court, but this isn’t it.

Because while basketball is a “game,” dealing with substance abuse certainly isn’t.

Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

  1. florida727 - Jul 12, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    I’ve commented on other stories related to this incident, so my feeling are well-known. I really like watching this kid play, and I (selfishly) hope I get to watch him play again. When I was under the impression it was failed drug tests that got him suspended, I was saddened and thought first and foremost about his future well-being, then secondly about his basketball future.

    However, this development is troubling. SUSPICION of speeding? Are you freaking kidding me? Sorry, but you’re either speeding or you’re not. Kind of like you’re either pregnant or your not; the line is pretty clear. If you have no PROOF that he was speeding, then I’d contend that in a court of law, anything the police procured from Henderson after puling him over is inadmissable in a court of law. Probably explains why even with him clearly possessing an illegal substance, they couldn’t arrest him. Their search and seizure was illegal. That’s why the DA didn’t prosecute.

    As pointed out though, the important issue here is getting Henderson straight. Don’t waste your talent, kid. Please.

    • henryd3rd - Jul 12, 2013 at 12:19 PM

      Can we stop being concern with the law and due process and get this kid some help. Ole Miss is his 5th school and it is obvious this young man has a real problem. The only reason he’s “attending” Ole Miss is his schools s basketball talent.

      I doubt if Coach Kennedy would have tolerated his guy were it not for his talent? And how about Coach’s recent contract extension which pays “him close to $2,000,000.00 per year through 2017. Word was that Ole Miss was considering showing him the door because his teams were always on the bubble”.

      These so-called institutions of higher learning are a joke. They use these kids and once their eligibility is used up they jettison them without any regards for their future wellbeing. I believe this kid is a train wreck waiting to happen and maybe those “benevolent” folks at the NCAA should get involved before this ends badly for this kid.

  2. jimeejohnson - Jul 12, 2013 at 12:12 PM

    At least he didn’t have smack, meth, or crack.

  3. onbucky96 - Jul 12, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    How was this career criminal allowed to beat my Badgers? Put this druggie away.

  4. iamhoraceknight - Jul 13, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    I Hope He Can Get It Together, But What In The World is ” Suspicion of Speeding?” As a Person that has pulled over for DWB ( Driving While Black) Numerous times, even this is new and perplexing to me.

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