On August 11, 2017, the NFL handed the Dallas Cowboys star running back Ezekiel Elliott a six-game suspension for breaking the NFL’s Personal Conduct Code due to an accusation of abuse. He was never tried and criminal charges were never brought against him, though there was an investigation by both the police and the National Football League (NFL).
There were two separate incidents from 2016 both involved Elliot’s partner, Tiffany Thompson. The first occurred on Feb. 12 in Florida, when Thompson called the police to report domestic abuse, however there were no witnesses and no signs of injury. In her call to 911, she said that Elliott pushed her into a wall hurting her shoulder because she texted one of his former teammates.
Elliott denied it and said he wanted her to leave and when he tried to escape by locking himself in a room, she grabbed him and he pushed her away. No charges were filed. The second incident was a week long ordeal in preparation for Elliott’s birthday.
Thompson told police that for all but one night through the week, Elliot abused her which prompted her to post pictures on social media calling for other women to stand up to abuse. Elliott, of course, denied any abuse to her and all other witnesses said that they did not hear or see any abuse, nor see any visible markings on her.
Even though there were never any charges brought upon him, the NFL still found that Elliott’s actions during those times were troublesome and did not portray an acceptable standard of morality. Every case of domestic abuse needs to be taken seriously, and I think Elliott absolutely deserved a suspension, but not the baseline six-game suspension.
Charges were never brought on him and frankly, some of the evidence is spotty at best. Evidence showed that Thompson did lie about at least one night of being abused. This alone does not make her story fallible, but for the rest of the week multiple people could not recall any visible bruising or signs of abuse.
While it is unfortunate to say, athletes do get away with more that the average person because of their standing, but this is not one of those cases. The prosecutor said he believes Thompson, but there is not enough evidence to press charges and that would not change if Elliott was not an athlete.
Suspending him for abuse is the right thing to do, suspending him because “his actions concerned the NFL” is shady and shows an agenda on the NFL’s part.