Seattle Seahawks' offensive lineman Chad Wheeler was released from King County Jail yesterday after he was accused of assaulting his girlfriend. He was released on a $400,000 bond and could potentially face felony assault-domestic violence charges.
The incident in question reportedly occurred early Saturday morning. A report obtained by the Seattle Times alleges that Wheeler threw the woman onto the bed before strangling her until she lost consciousness. After regaining consciousness, the woman reportedly picked a lock, fled and ultimately called the authorities.
Initial reporting from ESPN and Emmanuel Acho of FOX Sports indicate that the altercation began when his girlfriend refused to bow before him. At this time, it is unclear what led to the alleged request or if there were any witnesses. While local authorities investigate the incident, the Seattle Seahawks have issued a brief statement.
"We are aware of the situation and still gathering information," the team told ESPN.
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As news of the violent altercations circulates around social media, many fans are calling on the Seahawks to release Wheeler and the NFL to ban him. In recent years, the NFL has had an evolving reputation when handling issues of domestic abuse. In 2014, the league faced intense scrutiny when former NFL running back Ray Rice was recorded striking his wife. More recently, the league suspended Cleveland Browns running back Kareem Hunt eight games for striking a woman after he claims she called him a racial slur. At this time, the NFL has not handed down any disciplinary reaction regarding the matter. Furthermore, Wheeler nor his attorney have commented on the matter.
More details will be added to this report as they become available.
If you or someone you know have been affected by domestic abuse, please reach out: The National Domestic Violence Hotline http://thehotline.org 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
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