Former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Chris Rainey was in court on Friday to face the simple battery chargers that stemmed from a Thursday altercation with his girlfriend.
Rainey was released from jail Friday after his first appearance before a judge on his own recognizance after it was deemed that he would not be a flight risk or a threat to society.
His girlfriend, the alleged victim of the battery, is now saying that there was no crime committed on Thursday and that she wants the state of Florida to drop the charges, according to Rainey\’s attorney.
“The incident that occurred today is both troubling and unfortunate,” the victim wrote in an email to the judge, per a report by Jon Silman of the Gainesville Sun.
“The incident was simply over a book bag with a cellphone in it, and possession of this bag. In no way did I feel physically threatened at any time,” the victim reportedly said in the aforementioned email.
“Over the course of our relationship together, I have never been verbally or physically threatened by Chris Rainey. What happened today was a misunderstanding and should not affect his future in any way.”
After his attorney spoke, the judge told Rainey that he was not allowed to possess any weapons or firearms and that he couldn\’t make contact with the victim. The judge did say, however, that he couldn\’t control whether or not the victim contacted him.
According to the Gainesville Police report on Thursday, several witnesses claim that they saw Rainey strike the victim with an open hand during the incident.
The Steelers wasted no time in making their decision on Rainey as it was announced on Thursday afternoon that the Steelers would be releasing him.
Rainey was arrested in September of 2010, while at the University of Florida after sending a threatening text message to his girlfriend at the time. He was charged with felony aggravated stalking. The Steelers fifth-round pick this past April pled to a misdemeanor stalking charge and was ordered to pay for the cost of prosecution and undergo evaluation and counseling for anger management/domestic violence issues.
Did the Steelers jump the gun here in releasing Rainey? Should they have let this play out in court beforehand?
Below is video of the Rainey court appearance on Friday.