[BREAKING NEWS /2:27 pm ET/: CBS reports that Baltimore Ravens have released Ray Rice after seeing video footage.]
The publication of a graphic video showing the Baltimore Raves’ Ray Rice knocking his then girlfriend out cold has renewed questions about the NFL commissioner Roger Goodell’s violence against women policies, and Superior Court Judge, Michael Donio’s decision to allow Rice to enter a pretrial intervention program to avoid prosecution.
TMZ published the video, which can be found here (Caution: Graphic Violence).
The video shows Rice and his fiancée in an apparent argument. When his fiancée moves toward Rice inside the elevator, he levels a crushing left hook to her head, knocking her out instantly. The video then shows Rice dragging her limp body out of the elevator, while showing no apparent concern for her well-being.
Goodell received massive criticism after levying a two month suspension on Rice. He later admitted his decision was wrong and changed the NFL’s policy to a six game suspension for first-time offenders and a minimum of one year for a second offense. Now with the graphic video out, will Goodell see that the new policies are still too lenient?
NJ Superior Court Judge Michael Donio and NJ District Attorney Jim McClain agreed to put Rice in a diversion program for 1st time offenders, which kept him out of jail. This gruesome act of violence against a woman (now his wife) earned Rice a free walk.
The treatment of Rice by the prosecution and the courts is jarringly juxtaposed to the case of a Pennsylvania black, single mother, Shaneen Allen, who was pulled over for a traffic violation and dutifully informed the police officer that she had a legally-owned handgun in her possession.
She was arrested and charged with a felony for unlawful possession of a firearm (New Jersey does not recognize out-of-state gun permits). She faces a minimum of five years in prison if prosecuted for telling the police about her gun.
Allen legally purchased her firearm in PA to protect herself and her two sons after being robbed twice in the last year.
Judge Donio and DA McClain oversaw her case, just as the two oversaw Rice’s. But, in Allen’s case, they denied her the same opportunity as they afforded Rice – no first time offender entering a pretrial intervention program in this case. Instead, they offered Allen a 3 ½ year sentence instead of the mandatory 5 years.
That’s correct. They offered the first time offender a 3 ½ year jail sentence for driving into NJ with her legally-owned gun, while letting a professional athlete who violently and intentionally knocked out a women with a fierce left hook to the head go free.
Civil liberty advocates and gun rights groups are “Hopping mad that yet another good person with no criminal record, who made an honest mistake is being held to task by politically-motivated prosecutors,” said Nancy Schaffer of Colden NY, a gun owner and Second Amendment rights advocate.
Now that the magnitude of violence has been captured on film, Goodell, Donio and McClain have some questions to answer.
Goodell has changed the NFL policies, but are they strict enough?
Donio and McClain have yet to do anything but make Shaneen Allen a poster case for gun control.
Apparently putting a law-abiding, black, single mother of two in jail for 3 ½ years is what’s best for New Jersey and what’s best for reforming Ms. Allen, who lawfully owned a handgun, but mistakenly drove to NJ to set up her son’s birthday party decorations.
Justice is blind, they say. But when professional athletes and politically motivated judges and prosecutors are involved, apparently justice is really just politics.
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