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Hope Solo appears in court, pleads not guilty to domestic assault charges

Jun 23, 2014, 7:35 PM EDT

hope_solo AP

While the rest of us were watching Brazil and Mexico secure places in World Cup’s knockout round, a player who will be front-and-center at next year’s women’s tournament was appearing before a judge in Seattle. After being arrested this weekend, United States national team goalkeeper has pled not guilty to charges she assaulted her sister and nephew.

In custody since early Saturday, the 32-year-old has been released but barred from having contact with the two alleged victims. Reportedly intoxicated at the time of her arrest, Solo has also been instructed to avoid alcohol as one of the conditions of her release.

From reporting by Reuters:

Entering a not guilty plea on her behalf in Kirkland Municipal Court, defense lawyer Todd Maybrown said Solo was the actual victim in the incident. “She was hit over the head with a broom handle,” Maybrown told the judge…

Solo, who is charged with two counts of domestic violence in the fourth degree, said little during the proceedings except to state her name for the record.

Police said that during the incident she appeared to be upset and intoxicated, while her adult sister and her 17-year-old nephew had visible injuries. Solo was hosting a party at her home when the dispute took place, the Seattle Times reported.

[ MORE: Solo arrested early SaturdayUSWNT coverage ]

With the case currently at the she-said, they-said point of its arc, it’d be inappropriate to speculate as to how things are likely to transpire. What we can do is assess what damage has already been done and think about the potential scenarios.

Solo, who missed Thursday’s U.S. women’s national team game with France for personal reasons, was also absent for her club as the Seattle Reign defeated the Western New York Flash on Sunday, 2-1. Though some have speculated there could be repercussions to her playing status as a result of this incident, both U.S. Soccer and the Reign have declined comment on the case. There’s nothing that guarantees she will be sanctioned.

In that respect, we are in uncharted water. Though we have plenty of examples of athletes paying a professional cost for criminal activity in their private lives, we haven’t seen this scenario play out at the senior level for U.S. Soccer, be it on the women’s or men’s side of the equation.

There’s always been a trail-blazing aura to Solo’s persona, but this is one path she’d assume stay covered. If she is eventually found guilty, U.S. Soccer and the NWSL will have an opportunity to set a precedent. The question is whether they want to do so with a star like Hope Solo.

  1. txbearmeat - Jun 23, 2014 at 8:20 PM

    Last I heard (and I admittedly don’t watch the USWNT regularly), she was really struggling in goal. I’d have thought she would have been given the boot for poor performance a ways back by now…

    • beantownsoccer - Jun 23, 2014 at 9:34 PM

      you’ve heard wrong buddy,she is the best US keeper by a long shot too…it would be crazy to suspend her until this whole thing plays out (as minor as it is)

  2. beantownsoccer - Jun 23, 2014 at 9:36 PM

    this is a misdemeanor…more embarrassing than actually legally damaging. If she wasn’t a famous athlete this incident wouldn’t even have been reported by media (a drunk family dispute). This wasn’t a crime that endangers the public, clearly an effed up family incident that got out of control. They’ve already sold pictures to TMZ.

  3. jackvcr - Jun 23, 2014 at 10:37 PM

    No one in Seattle is surprised at this.

  4. Nofoolnodrool - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:29 AM

    Why wouldn’t they want to set a precedent? If you are a public face on a team, sport, or other public persona, there should be repercussions for criminal actions. There should be no “it’s ok if you’re a star”.

    Google Ray Lewis…..Nuff said.

    • paperlions - Jun 24, 2014 at 8:13 AM

      Or, you know, any rich or powerful person throughout history (including today).

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