Miami Heat forward Udonis Haslem is facing felony drug possession charges from being stopped on a Miami-Dade parkway Sunday afternoon, the South Florida Sun Sentinel is reporting. Haslem and a friend were arrested during the stop.
The Florida Highway Patrol cited Haslem in carrying in excess of 20 grams of marijuana. Documents in the bag had Haslem's friend's name on it, who also said the bag was his, the officer wrote in his report.
Haslem's attorney, Eric Schwartzreich, doesn't feel the charges are just, and that his status as a professional athlete is the cause. He told the Sun Sentinel on Monday that the felony charges were filed "because of who Udonis Haslem is. Udonis Haslem shouldn't be charged with anything."
FanHouse first tracked this story on August 15 when Haslem was arrested.
The former Florida star and Miami native was cited for going 78 mph in a 60 mph zone and was also charged with four counts of possessing drug paraphernalia.
Haslem's bond was $9,000 and, according to Schwartzreich, he was released from jail Sunday evening.
Haslem has a tentative arraignment at 9 a.m. Sept. 14 but he does not have to appear at that hearing.
According to the NBA's "Marijuana Program," a player who commits an initial violation must enter the league's counseling program. However, merely being cited does not require immediate entry into the program.
Haslem's agent, Henry Thomas, noted that they have not yet been contacted by the league.
This comes just a month after the six-year veteran signed a five-year contract worth about $20 million to remain in South Beach. He indicated in an email to the South Florida Sun Sentinel that he turned down full mid-level exception offers from both the Denver Nuggets and Dallas Mavericks.
The 30-year-old has become a staple in the Heat lineup, helping anchor the frontcourt and proving to be a reliable big at both ends of the floor. He averaged 9.9 points and 8.1 rebounds last season, and owns a ring from 2006 when Miami won the NBA title.
Dustin Johnson is penalized for "grounding" in a so-called "bunker" ... NBA players Udonis Haslem and Lance Stephenson are in midseason form ... and the Giants' Jonathan Sanchez can't make good on his bold prediction.
WRITTEN BY: Jordan Schultz