We may not know for a while whether Ben Roethlisberger is guilty of sexual assault allegations in Milledgeville. At the very least, the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback and Reynolds Plantation resident is not very smart for hanging out in college bars and continually putting himself in dumb situations.
But we just found out how serious this situation is.
Roethlisberger has hired Atlanta defense attorney Ed Garland. How significant is this? Consider some of Garland’s past clients:
♦ Ray Lewis: The Baltimore Ravens’ linebacker was indicted for murder and aggravated assault charges following the stabbing deaths of two people Super Bowl week in Atlanta in 2000. Lewis eventually pled guilty to misdemeanor obstruction of justice.
♦ Jamal Lewis: The then-Ravens running back was charged in 2004 with conspiracy and possession with the intent to distribute at least five kilograms of cocaine in 2000. He eventually served four months in prison for using his cellphone to set up the drug deal.
♦ Dany Heatley: The former Atlanta Thrasher was charged with vehicular homicide after speeding in his Ferrari caused a one-car crash in Buckhead that killed his passenger and teammate, Dan Snyder. Heatley avoided a trial, largely because alcohol was ruled to not have been a factor and the push for leniency by Snyder’s parents. He was sentenced to three years probation.
♦ Adam “Pacman”Jones: He was represented by attorney Manny Arora, who used to be a part of Garland’s firm. Jones,
the former Tennessee Titan and Dallas Cowboy, was alleged to have been involved in a fight at a Las Vegas strip club that resulted in a shooting and one patron being paralyzed. He faced two felony charges but eventually accepted a plea deal to one charge of conspiracy to commit disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor. He was given a suspended, one-year prison, probation, and ordered to perform 200 hours of community service.
So it seems the firm of Garland, Samuel and Loeb have stumbled onto a cottage industry: professional sports.
A 20-year-old student at Georgia College & State University told police she was sexually assaulted at a Milledgeville nightclub. Roethlisberger has been identified as the alleged attacker, but he hasn’t been charged.
This is the second time assault allegations have followed Roethlisberger. Last year a woman claimed she was raped by the quarterback at a charity golf function in 2008. Criminal chargers never were filed, but the woman, Andrea McNulty, has filed a civil suit and is seeking an apology and at least $440,000.
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