Deshaun Watson grand jury probe is expected to conclude by late January

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Last night’s sudden flurry of reporting regarding the lingering Deshaun Watson criminal investigation dusted off a case that largely became forgotten once the window closed on trades for 2021.

The news comes from search warrants signed on October 19, targeting Watson’s social-media apps. Per multiple sources, Watson’s representatives had previously indicated that the information would be provided voluntarily.

The warrants went unnoticed, we’re told, because they were filed under the name of the officer who sought them. It’s unclear how they ultimately were discovered.

The reporting sparked a broader conversation regarding the status of the case. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, it’s currently believed that the grand jury’s work will be concluded by the end of January. Although the possibility of felony charges looms, Nicole Hensley of the Houston Chronicle points out that the warrants suggest that authorities are considering charges of indecent assault, which is a misdemeanor.

If Watson were charged with one or more felonies, he undoubtedly would be placed on paid leave. It’s unclear how the NFL would handle pending charges rooted in the less severe concept of misdemeanor. Also, if Watson ultimately is charged with one or more misdemeanors, a quick plea deal likely would be pursued, setting the state for a likely inevitable unpaid suspension of, say, six or eight games, based on the Ben Roethlisberger precedent.

On the surface, the notion that an answer will arrive by the end of January meshes with the NFL’s offseason schedule. The league year doesn’t begin until March 16. Trades can’t happen until then. However, they can be negotiated and informally struck weeks in advance. With this year’s game of quarterback carousel likely to be as robust as last year’s (if not more), multiple deals could be done in January, before true clarity emerges as to Watson’s potential criminal case.

8 responses to “Deshaun Watson grand jury probe is expected to conclude by late January

  1. Remember the truism that a prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich. There is no presence in the grand jury proceeding by the accused or (his attorney). Just because someone is indicted doesn’t mean they have been tried and convicted.

  2. Why is Hardin not offering up the access he promised? Just how bad is the evidence on Watson and why is this taking so long with so many victims coming forward with the same story?

  3. Why would they convene a grand jury for mis-demeaners? Second, are all the cases against him at the same level. all misdemeaners? I mean wouldnt you just settle and pay a fine and then try and settle out of court with the complainers.
    Yes many want to sue to get big bucks but how many big bucks will you get going into court with a misdemeaner complaint. None of this makes sense.

  4. Why is Hardin not offering up the access he promised? Just how bad is the evidence on Watson and why is this taking so long with so many victims coming forward with the same story?…………………that’s because there is no evidence

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