Monday, August 22, 2011
Albert Haynesworth pleads no contest
WASHINGTON -- NFL defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth pleaded no contest to a charge of simple assault on Monday to resolve a case in which he was accused of touching a waitress' breast while having drinks with friends at a Washington hotel.
If he stays out of trouble over the next 18 months and completes 160 hours of community service, prosecutors have agreed to drop the charge entirely. Haynesworth, who was recently traded from the Washington Redskins to the New England Patriots, appeared in D.C. Superior Court to enter his plea.
After a prosecutor read the facts the government would have proven at trial in the case, including that Haynesworth had slid his credit card down the woman's shirt and touched her breast, the judge asked Haynesworth to respond.
"I do not contest the government's proffer of facts on this charge," he said.
Haynesworth, 30, was originally facing the more serious charge of sexual abuse in the case, which stemmed from a visit to the W Hotel in February. If convicted of that charge in a trial that was set to begin Tuesday he would have faced up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
Prosecutors dropped that charge Monday as part of the plea agreement.
The judge set a status hearing in the case for Feb. 21.
An NFL spokesperson said the incident is under review when asked by ESPNBoston.com's Mike Reiss if Haynesworth could face league discipline. A league source, however, told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is not expected to hand down any further discipline to Haynesworth.