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Haynesworth pleads no contest to simple assault

Posted by Ed Giuliotti  August 22, 2011 04:30 PM

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Washington, D.C. - Albert Haynesworth pled nolo contendre to misdemeanor simple assault this afternoon in D.C. Superior Court, avoiding a trial on a greater charge of misdemeanor sexual abuse. The trial had been scheduled to start tomorrow.

An NFL spokesman says the league will review Haynesworth's case under the personal conduct policy.

Haynesworth said nothing as he left the courthouse and reporters peppered him with questions. His attorney, A. Scott Bolden, made a brief statement outside the courthouse.

"Mr. Haynesworth is very pleased to have this over in his life and move on with his life, get back to New England and get back to doing what he does best and that's play professional football," said Bolden. "This was a difficult time for him, his family and others connected to him. We put up a good fight. The US attorney put up a good fight. This resolution was welcome by us.

"Hopefully, he moves forward. He does what he's supposed to do as far as the conditions of this agreement. I'm positive he's going to do that. Then, he can put this chapter behind him."

If Haynesworth stays out of trouble for 18 months, the prosecution will then move to dismiss the case and the simple assault charge. As part of a deferred sentencing arrangement, the recently acquired Patriot must perform 160 hours of community service and undergo counseling if directed after an alcohol abuse assessment and a psycho-social assessment.

Additionally, Haynesworth cannot violate any law, be rearrested on probable cause, or violate any court order. If he is rearrested, he must report that to the court. Haynesworth must also stay away from the waitress who claimed he sexually harassed her by fondling her breasts at a private party at the W Hotel in Washington, D.C. Haynesworth is due in court for review hearings after six, 12, and 18 months. He was also instructed to pay 250 dollars to the victim's fund.

If Haynesworth violates any conditions of the plea agreement, then he goes straight to sentencing and faces a maximum of 180 days in jail and $1,000 fine.

"This resolution requires Mr. Haynesworth to atone for his crime while at the same time honoring the victim's wishes to move on with her life," said U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen, Jr. "She will not be forced to relive this upsetting experience again in a court proceeding or to endure the glare of the media spotlight."

Staff writer Shalise Manza Young contributed to this report.

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