The aforementioned video of Rice dragging her from the elevator surfaced four days later. According to reports, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell pressed police officials for more video evidence, but to no avail.
In March, Rice’s charges were upped from simple to aggravated assault. A day later, he and Palmer got married. Two months later, Rice avoided jail time by rejecting a plea offer and instead pleading guilty and entering a pre-trial program for first-time offenders that also cleared him of all charges.
The NFL finally acted in July, suspending Rice for two games, much to the dismay of critics who pointed out the league’s harsh stance on performance-enhancing drug users, who get suspended four games for a first-time offense. Having buckled under the scrutiny, Goodell eventually admitted he flubbed the Rice suspension, citing a lack of precedence for his inability to rule correctly, and adopted a new policy that will suspend first-time offenders of domestic violence for six games with a lifetime ban for a second offense.
Since that announcement, two players – San Francisco’s Ray McDonald and Jets’ practice squad receiver Quincy Enunwa – have been arrested for domestic violence. The league has yet to suspend or discipline either player. Neither have their respective teams.
Within hours of the release of this latest video footage showing Rice striking his wife in an elevator with his left hand, knocking her unconscious, the Ravens terminated Rice’s contract, making him a free agent. He still has one game left to serve on his two-game suspension. The six-year vet rushed for only 660 yards last season, the lowest total since his rookie year in 2008.
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