NFL star Rice avoids domestic violence trial

Domestic violence charges against Ray Rice were dismissed after the former National Football League running back completed a pretrial intervention programme, New Jersey prosecutors said.

Rice played with the Baltimore Ravens from 2008 until being suspended in 2014, had his $35 million contract terminated in September when a video surfaced of him knocking out his then-finance Janay Palmer in an elevator at a casino in February.

Rice, 28, applied for New Jersey’s pre-trial intervention programme at a court appearance last May, where he pleaded not guilty to assault charges. The Rice case triggered a wave of criticism against NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell for what was widely seen as light penalties he gave to players in domestic abuse cases.

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Goodell initially gave Rice a two-game suspension but in September after video of the punch went viral, suspended him indefinitely.

The commissioner admitted “he didn’t get it right” and has since revamped the league’s policies concerning domestic violence.

Rice filed a wrongful termination grievance after he was cut from the Ravens and settled with the club.

Rice had his indefinite suspension from the NFL overturned. He has since married Palmer.

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