September 15th, 2014
09:22 PM ET

NFL players union: Ray Rice should play again

Ray Rice and the players association are expected to appeal the indefinite suspension given to the former Baltimore Ravens running back, after a video of him punching his fiancée was released.  At issue is whether the league and its embattled commissioner Roger Goodell punished Rice twice for the same incident.

In interview with Erin Burnett, the president of the NFL Players association Eric Winston says Rice be able to play again in the NFL.

"I think that we’re all entitled to a second chance." Winston tells Burnett. "Obviously he made a horrific mistake and he’s paying for it.  He’s already disciplined once, and actually disciplined multiple times by the commissioner."

Filed under: International • News • NFL • Ray Rice
Ray Rice video prompts surge in abuse calls
September 15th, 2014
08:45 PM ET

Ray Rice video prompts surge in abuse calls

The video showing Ray Rice punch his now-wife Janay has sparked a pivotal moment for domestic violence in America. Janay Rice is one of 12 million victims of domestic abuse in this country every year.

Sponsors stand by NFL after scandals

While that video is horrifying to many, it is also giving abuse victims around the country the courage to come forward. According to the National Domestic Abuse hotline, the number of calls from abuse victims has spiked 84 percent.

NFL union: Rice should play again

"A lot of people probably said, I don't want be that," Brian Pinero of the National Domestic Violence hotline said. "I don't want to wind up in that situation."

The Women's Transitional Living Center, a shelter for domestic abuse victims in Orange County, California is just one center seeing an upswing in contact.

"So that first phone call no matter what your experiencing is the most difficult one," Gigi Tsantos, director of the Women's Transitional Living Center said.

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For domestic abuse victim Karine Zarate the Rice video was a terrible reminder of what she says she's been trying to forget for years.

"One of the first times was in an elevator. So when I saw that video of Ray Rice hitting his then fiance it just brought back all those memories," Zarate said.

"I don't know why when that door closed, my boyfriend at the time my ex husband thought that he could just push me against the wall and punch me in the face repeatedly," Zarate said. "Thank goodness I didn't go unconscious. It was just an absolute shock. This did not just happen to me."

At the time she did not file a police report, Instead of letting the Rice video send her back to a very dark place, the video prompted her to share her own story on Facebook for the first time, hoping would somehow help others.

"It was the easiest way for me to say what I have to say and like it or not if it helps on to ten to 100 women out there or more and that's why I put it out there."

Like Janay Rice, Zarate went on to marry her then boyfriend, even having three children with him. She says the abuse subsided, but then returned with a vengeance.

Why hasn't Ray Rice been prosecuted?

Zarate says she stayed until the day she came to find her husband's hand print on her child's face. However police never charged him for child abuse.

"When I came home I saw a mark on my daughter's face. I immediate asked, I said what happened? And he said she wouldn't stop screaming and that was the moment I grabbed my camera and I took a picture that will always haunt me," Zarate said.

That day she says social media came to her rescue as her husband attacked her trying to get her phone. She managed to send out a tweet for help.

"The tweet that I sent out was help he's hitting me again and that's all I said. And one of my girlfriends came to my house," Zarate said.

Police arrived, Zarate filed a report and obtained a restraining order. After 8-months Zarate agreed to lift the restraining order because her husband completed his court order counseling.

The state dropped the criminal battery charge and he pled guilty to a much lesser charge of disturbing the peace. Zarate filed for divorce and is now living happily with her children. Her husband has visitation rights.

Zarate says she knows how hard it is to make that first call for help and she hopes that the Rice domestic abuse video will help other victims come forward and stop the abuse.


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Filed under: News • Ray Rice • Sports
September 12th, 2014
10:19 PM ET

Why some women are proudly wearing Ray Rice jerseys

Some Baltimore Ravens fans are standing by Ray Rice at the first game of the season since Rice was suspended for attacking his now-wife. Many fans attending the game wore his number 27 jersey, including women.

In an interview with CNN's Erin Burnett, Ravens fan Lauren Brown explains why she continues to wear the disgraced football player's jersey.

Filed under: News • NFL • Ray Rice
September 12th, 2014
08:42 PM ET

Goodell vs. Rice: Who's telling the truth?

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is digging in, insisting he didn't realize the scope and severity of Ray Rice's attack on his now-wife in a Atlantic City elevator.

Ray Rice case: Did NFL execs know the truth earlier?

In a letter to the player's association obtained by ESPN, Goodell writes that Rice's description of the attack months ago was "starkly different from what he saw on the video that surfaced Monday.

It's an assertion that contradicts a report that Rice confessed to Goodell he had punched his fiancee.

CNN's Miguel Marquez is OutFront with more.

Filed under: News • NFL • Ray Rice • Sports
September 11th, 2014
11:52 PM ET

Can NFL investigation into handling of Ray Rice case be truly independent?

There is new evidence the NFL's commissioner is not telling the whole truth about when he first learned that Ray Rice knocked out his now-wife in an Atlantic City elevator.

According to ESPN, Rice revealed to Roger Goodell in June that he had punched his then fiancee.
That contradicts what Goodell told CBS about that conversation with Rice. These inconsistencies have forced the NFL to enlist the help of a former FBI chief to investigate the league's handling of the Ray Rice case. But questions are already growing about who is leading the investigation.

CNN's Miguel Marquez is OutFront.

Filed under: News • Ray Rice • Sports
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