May 26, 2008 / 1:17 AM / 9 years ago

Chicago Bulls player Joakim Noah charged for marijuana

<p>Chicago Bulls draftee Joakim Noah smiles during a news conference in Deerfield, Illinois July 2, 2007. REUTERS/John Gress</p>

MIAMI (Reuters) - Chicago Bulls basketball player Joakim Noah, the son of French former tennis star Yannick Noah, was charged on Sunday with possession of marijuana.

Police in Gainesville, Florida, where Noah starred on two national collegiate championship teams with the University of Florida, said the player was spotted by officers on a street in the downtown bar district early on Sunday with a cup containing alcohol.

“He put the cup down on the street and walked away when he saw the officers, a pretty good indication that it didn’t just contain juice or something,” Gainesville Police spokeswoman Summer Hallett said.

Carrying an open container of alcohol is a misdemeanor offense in Gainesville, she said.

Police checked the cup and found it contained alcohol. When they searched Noah, officers found a marijuana cigarette in a cigarette pack in his pocket, Hallett said.

Noah was charged with possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana and carrying an open container of alcohol in public, both misdemeanors. Because of the nature of the offenses he was given a court date at the scene and released immediately.

Noah helped the Florida Gators to national college championships in 2006 and 2007 and was taken by the Bulls with the 9th selection in the 2007 National Basketball Association draft.

He averaged 6.6 points and 5.6 rebounds per game in his rookie season in the NBA.

Editing by Philip Barbara

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