Kenrick Ellis has had a legal case pending for his entire tenure with the Jets, but that case has wrapped up with a plea agreement, the victim's attorney said today.
The Jets defensive lineman was due to face trial on a malicious wounding felony charge next week, but S. Howard Woodson said his client and the victim in the case, Dennis Eley, has reluctantly agreed to a plea agreement for a lesser charge.
According to Woodson, the terms of the agreement are that Ellis will plead guilty to assault and battery, a misdemeanor charge. That plea will come with six months of active jail time, but per Virginia law, he will only have to serve half, i.e. 90 days in jail. He could also receive credit for time served.
One potential complication with the case was that Ellis faced the possibility of being deported if convicted of a felony, because he is a U.S. permanent resident, ESPN New York reported. It appears that Ellis is now safe from deportation by pleading to a misdemeanor, though the Commonwealth's Attorney could not be reached to verify.
The case stemmed from an April 2010 incident while Ellis was a student at Hampton University. The Jets selected Ellis in the third round of last year's draft despite his pending legal issues and said they were comfortable with the risk.
Woodson said his client will likely continue to pursue a civil claim against Ellis. It was originally filed last year for $3 million, before being withdrawn because it was about to lapse. If refiled, the suit could be for less money given the outcome of the criminal case.
Ellis declined to answer questions about his legal situation yesterday because the case was still pending.
Who cares at this point? From a football perspective I could care less. From a TMZ perspective i suppose it still matters.
Considering he'd have to take time to meet with lawyers, respond to depositions and interrogatories and possibly spend time in a courtroom for several days...I guess it's not important and wouldn't take any time away from his football actvities.
Typically most courts will offer pro athletes a suspended sentence that he can serve probably next Feb-Apr. I doubt he serves anything this offseason.
As a Jets fan I'm happy, but as a person that really twist my balls good right there. Any other regular person doesn't have the flexibility to serve a sentence when its convenient to them, but athletes and entertainers can? They should have to follow the same rules everyone else has to follow.
Woody got his money's worth from the legal talent here. The DA, the Judge or the immigration and naturalization service could have decided to be hard nosed but it got worked out and smoothed over in favor of the Jets.
In a civil case you cannot "unplead" an earlier plea from a criminal case so whatever Ellis is pleading to here will be assumed to be true in the civil case. Ellis can assume he will be paying over some chunk of money to the victim (no longer "alleged").