Free agent cornerback Richard Sherman was "drunk and belligerent" and "threatening to kill himself" during a confrontation with family members in the lead-up to his arrest early Wednesday, a woman who identified herself as his wife said in the 911 call to dispatch.
The 911 call was obtained by ESPN and ABC News and includes discussion of potential self-harm. Sherman was arrested on suspicion of "burglary domestic violence" in King County, Washington, but did not harm anyone in the incident, authorities said.
He was released without bail Thursday afternoon on one count each of criminal trespass with a domestic violence designation, malicious mischief, DUI and resisting arrest, all misdemeanors. He will not be prosecuted for "burglary domestic violence." Sherman appeared in a King County court for a hearing Friday, where he pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Richard Sherman's wife describes scary scene in 911 call
The 911 caller, who is believed to be Ashley Moss, Sherman's wife, asked for immediate assistance while her husband was "being aggressive, he has sent text messages ... he's trying to leave now in the house, he's being aggressive, he's wrestling with my uncle, he's threatening to kill himself, he has sent text messages to people saying he's going to hang himself."
She alerted authorities that if police show up, Sherman said he would try and fight them. She asked the dispatcher for officers to "please not shoot, is what I'm asking," and assured them there were no weapons.
Moss, who at one point identified herself as "Ashley Sherman," interrupted her conversation with the dispatcher a few times to speak with others in the home about where car keys were and to try to prevent Sherman from leaving, saying "Richard, please stop."
The caller told the dispatcher it was an emergency, and identified the man as Richard Sherman in telling her that she closed the gate so he couldn't leave. She said Sherman had two bottles of hard alcohol.
A follow-up call was made to 911 in which the caller said she believed Sherman was traveling to her parents' home 30 miles away in Redmond, per ESPN.
A separate 911 call by someone in the construction zone described a possibly impaired driver after Sherman allegedly drove his SUV into the closed zone, authorities said.
Wife assures no one was harmed in incident
A Redmond Police spokesman clarified Wednesday that the suspicion of "domestic violence" is because the parties are related, and not because anyone was injured in the incident.
Authorities said he did not enter the home nor did he try to hit family members. A charge of malicious mischief is for damaging the front door.
Moss gave a short statement to the Seattle Times to say that her husband did not harm anyone.
“At this time we’re going to make no statements, except he didn’t harm anybody,” Moss said. “My kids were not harmed in the incident. He’s a good person and this is not his character. We’re doing all right, just trying to get him out. I want people to know no one was injured.”
The NFL Players Association also released a statement about the arrest.
Sherman arrested for 'burglary domestic violence'
Sherman's arrest early Wednesday was allegedly preceded by a one-car hit-and-run that is connected to Sherman. A separate 911 call by someone in the construction zone described a possibly impaired drive after Sherman allegedly drove his SUV into the closed zone, authorities said.
When officers arrived at the in-laws' home, Sherman was reportedly attempting to force entry, police said in a press conference late Wednesday. The Redmond police chief said the conversation began "amicable" as officers tried to calm the situation and develop a rapport with the former NFL star. But it turned confrontational when they said they had probable cause for an arrest.
Sherman, 33, reportedly fought with officers when he was told he'd be taken into custody, and a K9 team was deployed. He suffered minor cuts to his lower leg caused by the dog and was briefly treated at the hospital, per ESPN.
The former Seattle Seahawks star spent the past three seasons with the San Francisco 49ers. He is also a vice president for the NFLPA executive committee. Sherman is a five-time, first-team All-Pro corner over 10 NFL seasons.
49ers GM offers Sherman, family support
49ers general manager John Lynch was asked about Sherman on Thursday, and offered his former cornerback and his family his support any way possible.
“Obviously not the news you want to hear, surprised certainly,” Lynch said, via USA Today. “Obviously reached out to the family – to Richard, to Ashley – just let them know that we want to be a resource for them. We do for all our players, both current and former.
“More than anything, just praying for them. They’re good people, and just praying that they find their way through this, and we’ll support them any way we can.”
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