Blackhawks reinstate Ross after 'revenge porn' charges dropped

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Josh Cooper
Chicago Blackhawks left wing Garret Ross (61) is congratulated by teammate Mark McNeill after scoring during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Detroit Red Wings in Detroit, Thursday, Sept. 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
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The Chicago Blackhawks have reinstated forward Garret Ross after felony charges of "non-consensual dissemination of private sexual images” were dropped in DeKalb County, Illinois on Tuesday.

The crime is more commonly referred to as “revenge porn.”

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Chicago suspended Ross indefinitely on March 23 after the team said it became aware of the charges on March 19. That day Ross was pulled from a Rockford IceHogs game on a coach’s decision.

The alleged incident happened in August and Ross was charged on Feb. 2. 

"On March 23, 2016, the Chicago Blackhawks suspended Garret Ross after learning of a legal proceeding against him, and stated at that time that the suspension was indefinite pending the outcome of the legal process. We learned today, March 29, that the legal process concluded in Illinois with the dismissal of all charges against Garret. As a result, Garret Ross is reinstated with the IceHogs, effective immediately. We will have no further comment on the matter."

Per a police report, Ross allegedly sent a pornographic video of a woman one of his teammates dated to her in a text message exchange about Ross's recent breakup with his girlfriend. The video was originally sent to Ross's teammate and she was then concerned that the video had been "disbursed to other men." After this the woman decided to pursue charges against both Ross and the teammate, whose name was not divulged in the report. Ross’s teammate was not charged. 

The charges were dropped because the alleged incident occurred in Michigan, not Illinois, though the woman can still file a complaint in Michigan.

In Illinois, “revenge porn” can carry a maximum sentence of three years in jail. Michigan's are reportedly not as severe. 

The 23-year-old Ross is in the final year of his contract with the Blackhawks. The team selected Ross in the fifth-round of the 2012 NHL Draft.

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Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!