In July 2014, Hardy was found guilty of assaulting his former girlfriend Nicole Holder and communicating threats to her during a May 2014 incident. Deadspin's Diana Moskovitz wrote an article featuring new details and photos of Holder after the alleged assault. (Warning: The linked article contains graphic, disturbing images and profanity.) Moskovitz's article can be seen here.
On Monday, ESPN reported further:
A source told ESPN's Ed Werder that the NFL saw all of the police photos released Friday during a trip to North Carolina by NFL investigator Lisa Friel in April, before Hardy was suspended by the NFL. The source tells Werder that the NFL also sued the state of North Carolina for the right to view seven additional photos related to the incident.
Hardy released a statement on Saturday in the wake of Deadspin's report:
"In addition, a league source told Werder that at no time during the NFL's investigation, nor through his suspension and appeal, did Hardy demonstrate any remorse for the incident," relayed ESPN.
Mark Maske of the Washington Post reported, citing a source, that the photos were "not accessible" to the Cowboys prior to Hardy's signing. "Greg Hardy told investigators, on the photos: He wasn’t responsible. She attacked him & he protected himself. She was drunk and fell down," reported NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.
Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports provided a statement from Cowboys owner Jerry Jones:
According to Moskovitz, police records show that Holder told police Hardy pushed her into a bathroom wall, pulled her hair and threw her onto a futon covered in guns. She also alleged Hardy strangled her until she said, "Kill me so I don’t have to."
Holder told officers that Hardy had his personal assistant, Sammy Curtis, hold her back after he let her go. He then called 911 and claimed she was attempting to assault him.
Kristina Laurence, who was sleeping over at Hardy's apartment that night, told police she heard Hardy beating Holder in the next room.
While Holder was initially reluctant to tell police what happened to her, she eventually opened up and said to Officer Christopher Martin that "if she ever did anything to damage [Hardy's] career that he would kill her."
Although Hardy was found guilty on two charges, they were later dismissed when Holder did not make herself available for an appeal hearing.
After the case was dismissed, Michael Gordon, Joseph Person and Mark Washburn of the Charlotte Observer reported that legal experts speculated prosecutors believed there were inconsistencies in Holder's testimony, which made it difficult to proceed without her presence.
Per Moskovitz, Mecklenburg County District Attorney R. Andrew Murray said "reliable information" suggests Holder and Hardy came to terms on a civil settlement.
The charges against Hardy were officially expunged Thursday, according to Person, and he will play for the Cowboys against the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday night based on the list of inactives provided by DallasCowboys.com's David Helman.
Hardy spent all but one game of the 2014 season on the commissioner's exempt list as a member of the Carolina Panthers before signing with Dallas this past offseason. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported the Tampa Bay Buccaneers also considered signing Hardy, relayed Rick Stroud of Tampa Bay Times.
He was suspended for the first 10 games of the 2015 regular season, but that ban was later reduced to just four contests. Rapoport reported prior to the Week 9 showdown against the Eagles that Hardy's "status [and] playing time won't change."
Should the Cowboys decide to take action in the wake of the photos, some precedent for that does exist, as the Baltimore Ravens released running back Ray Rice after a video showing him punching his then-fiancee was released last year.
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