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Deal Lets Ravens' Ray Rice Avoid Trial for Knocking Out Wife

Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens said he was a "happy husband," appearing in court earlier this month with the woman he was accused of assaulting.

Ray Rice after the Baltimore Ravens won the Super Bowl in 2013. (Credit: Michael Woyton)
Ray Rice after the Baltimore Ravens won the Super Bowl in 2013. (Credit: Michael Woyton)

Assault charges against Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice for allegedly knocking out his then-girlfriend could be dismissed if he successfully completes a New Jersey pretrial intervention program.

The state's pre-trial intervention program focuses on rehabilitation to prevent future criminal behavior rather than taking first-time offenders to trial. It is designed for New Jersey residents, but anyone may apply, according to New Jersey Courts. Its successful completion reportedly expunges the charges from the person’s record.

Earlier this month, Rice pleaded not guilty to aggravated assault charges for allegedly punching and knocking out his then-girlfriend, Janay Palmer, in an Atlantic City casino elevator, WJZ TV reports.

The case stemmed from a Feb. 15 incident in which Rice was seen dragging Palmer, who was his fiancee at the time, at a casino. He and Palmer were married the day after Rice was indicted on a third-degree aggravated assault charge in March. They live with their young daughter in Reisterstown and are undergoing marriage counseling.

TMZ first published the video of Rice dragging the seemingly unconscious Palmer out of a Revel Casino Hotel elevator. Police say the two hit each other, but Rice’s blow reportedly knocked Palmer out. Charges against Palmer were dropped.

Palmer reportedly wrote a letter to the court supporting Rice’s pretrial intervention application, according to the Ravens website.

Regardless of the court action, ESPN reported Rice would still likely face punishment from the NFL, like a fine or suspension, for violating its personal conduct policy

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Bee May 22, 2014 at 08:41 AM
This is unbelievable. Athletes think they are above the law. Even more disturbing is fans will still applaud him playing. He should be thrown in jail and off the team. Not a role model.
David J Iacono May 22, 2014 at 09:13 AM
Let's face it, in America there are those that are too big to jail. You know the ones. Big Wall Street executives, million dollar athletes, million/billion dollar corporate executives. There are 2 systems of justice in America, one for the wealthy and one for the rest of us. Justice in America, THE BEST THAT MONEY CAN BUY.
Bob Higginbotham May 22, 2014 at 10:43 AM
Rice is going to skate just like Ray Lewis did years ago. If he gets fined by the league the Ravens will take care of it. At least I have fond memories of the Baltimore Colts to fall back on. They were role models, were part of the community and played football for the love of the game.
Robert May 23, 2014 at 04:51 AM
What's wrong with you people? Sentencing guidelines for first time domestic violence offenders rarely encompass jail time, especially when the victim sustained no serious injuries. On top of that, the actual assult wasn't captured on video, and therefore could be difficult case to present to a jury.
Crime Solver May 23, 2014 at 09:47 PM
@ Robert, While I do think the punishment fits for first time offender with such a promising future, I just wanted to make a note how the victim clearly is not using her brain by taking his hand in marriage right after this incident occurred as the timing sounds too convienant to be anything other than to prevent justice being served. Hopefully they overcome this and live great future together but when it happens again I hope she don't cry wolf or vice versa.

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