Domestic Violence Charge Against Mets Closer Dismissed

 FORT LEE, N.J. (AP) _ A judge dismissed a charge Thursday stemming from a domestic violence complaint against New York Mets star relief pitcher Jeurys Familia after the player’s wife told a prosecutor that her husband did not hurt her.

The couple left the New Jersey courthouse and drove off together without talking to reporters.

The 27-year-old, a first-time All-Star this year, faces a possible Major League Baseball suspension if he is found to have violated the sport’s domestic violence policy. The league said in a statement that the investigation is ongoing.

“We are aware of MLB’s investigation into this matter, and we will handle it in the appropriate course,” said attorney Jay Reisinger, who is representing Familia in the league’s probe.

Familia had been charged with simple assault and had pleaded not guilty after his wife, Bianca Rivas, made several frantic 911 calls to Fort Lee police on the morning of Oct. 31 in which she described her husband as “drunk.”

“My husband had a little bit of alcohol, and he’s going crazy,” Rivas said in the 911 recording, according to excerpts of a transcript published by NJ.com.

Rivas was left with scratches on her chest and a bruise on her right cheek.

But the judge dropped the charge after Prosecutor Arthur Balsamo said he met with Rivas and her lawyer. Balsamo said Rivas told him that the scratch came from the couple’s 1-year-old child and the mark on her cheek came from leaning on it.

Paul Brickfield, one of Familia’s lawyers, said they were happy the case was dismissed.

The Dominican Republic native set a franchise record with 51 saves last season. He previously was involved in an ad campaign for an anti-domestic violence group, which has since ended its relationship with him.

Three players have been suspended since MLB and the players’ association agreed to the domestic violence policy in August 2015: New York Yankees reliever Aroldis Chapman (29 games), Colorado shortstop Jose Reyes (51 games) and Atlanta outfielder Hector Olivera (82 games).

 

(© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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