John R. Tyson, the chief financial officer of Tyson Foods, pleaded not guilty to charges of public intoxication and criminal trespass following an alleged incident where he was found asleep in a bed of the residence of a person he did not know.
Tyson was arrested on November 6 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. According to news reports, a college-age woman in Fayetteville returned to her home to find the man who was later identified as Tyson, asleep in her bed. Police came to the residence to find Tyson’s identification in his wallet on his pants on the floor. He reportedly also smelled of alcohol.
He was released later that day after posting a bond of $415.
A spokesperson for the Fayetteville District Court confirmed with WATT Global Media that Tyson had entered not guilty pleas to both charges, and his next scheduled court date is February 15.
Tyson, a descendant of founder of Tyson Foods, was recently promoted to chief financial officer after having been the company’s chief sustainability officer from September 2019 until his promotion in September 2022.
During Tyson Foods’ quarterly earnings call on November 14, Tyson acknowledged he was involved in an incident, and apologized for his actions.
“I want to take a moment to address an important issue,” Tyson said. “I’m sure you’ve seen the recent incident involving me. I’m embarrassed and I want to let you know that I take full responsibility for my actions. I also want to apologize to our investors as I have to our employees. This was an incident inconsistent with our company values, as well as my personal values. I just wanted you guys to hear this directly from me and to know that I’m committed to making sure that this never happens again.”
When pressed for more information about the incident in both the earnings call and a subsequent telephone press conference, Tyson offered nothing further.
However, Tyson Foods CEO Donnie King said the alleged incident is under review.
“Like John, the company takes this matter seriously,” King said. “Tyson Foods has a strong, robust corporate governance process. Our independent board of directors are overseeing a thorough review of this matter, and I’m confident in this independent process.”