Richardson was “cleared” of criminal charges before lawsuit

Getty Images

The weekend news that Browns running back Trent Richardson has been named in an assault lawsuit triggered a fairly simple chain of logic for many Cleveland fans:  (1) Richardson wasn’t arrested; and (2) if he wasn’t arrested, he must be completely innocent.

A report from FOX 8 in Cleveland bolsters this faulty line of thinking, under a headline proclaiming that Richardson was “cleared” before the suit was filed.

But the decision not to charge Richardson under a criminal justice system that requires proof guilt beyond a reasonable doubt doesn’t mean Richardson will be exonerated under the much lower standard for civil liability.  (O.J. Simpson can explain the difference.)

Per the report, the authorities closed the case after the two women who allegedly were assaulted by three other women at the direction of Richardson stopped cooperating.  “We attempted several times to have [the women] come on station to fill out witness statements because the original witness statements we couldn’t  read,” Capt. Jim Drozdowski of Lorain County Sheriff’s Office told FOX 8.  “We needed to talk to them to find out what all took place.  They made no effort to contact us, and we worked on this for a week.”

The lawyer for the two alleged victims claims they made statements at the scene, and that there was no need for further cooperation.  It’s also possible, if not probable, that the lawyer told the women to not say anything more, since anything they said to authorities could have been used against them in their civil case.

Richardson is accused among other things of slamming his hand onto the women’s vehicle, causing more than $1,500 in damage.  He told the authorities that he “put [his] hand down” on the car in self defense, “to stop them from hitting me.”

(Richardson is really strong, but we didn’t know he was strong enough to stop a car with his bare hands.)

Thus, the decision not to charge Richardson won’t matter in the civil lawsuit.  Eventually, the women will tell their version of the events to the jury, Richardson will tell his side, other witnesses will be called, other evidence will be introduced, and the jury will decide whether it is more likely than not (i.e., 50.1 percent or more likely) that the women’s version is the right version.

If the jury believes the plaintiffs more than the jury believes Richardson, the plaintiffs will win.  And Richardson will be deemed legally responsible for the alleged injuries.  Regardless of whether he was or wasn’t charged with a crime.

44 responses to “Richardson was “cleared” of criminal charges before lawsuit

  1. Jim Brown and now Chump Richardson.
    That classy Cleveland organization sure does love to tie themselves to women abusers.

    New owner, but still the same sad, classless franchise

  2. I have never understood, “Innocent, but guilty.” Even with the OJ case (I know people are going to thumbs down just for this but listen first). Either you did it, or you didn’t. Think about it in your own situation:

    Someone claims you had a road rage incident. It was just someone who likely got your license plate on the highway on your way to work. You fight it and, because they have no proof the judicial system lets you go, no charge.

    Then the person sues you in civil court and now you have to pay $5000 due to mental anguish. You didn’t do it, but still you have to pay. – Bee Yes
    (also, for Richardson to make $1500 in damage to a car with his fist? Bee Yes)

  3. He is useless. I knew a guy who actually used the word goodest in a sentence, yes that’s right….goodest (my phone won’t even let me spell it that way), is trouble. Another Browns fiasco.

  4. If the incident took place at his residence, and he asked the women to leave and they refused, he had every right to kick them out, no matter what it took.

    Even then, the “victims” accounts make little to no sense.

    This has money grab written all over it.

  5. Nothing to see here , just a couple of skanks trying to get paid. Trent was just trying to protect his house. Always remember – Dont make Trent angry, you won’t like him when he’s angry. SOunds like he is recovering well from his rib injuries, Wow can’t wait to see what he does on the field this year if his offseason training involves stopping moving cars with his bare hands and cousing $1.500 damage. Watch out AFC north.

  6. godofwine330, The burden of proof in a civil trial is lower than in a criminal trial.

    A criminal trial is “beyond a reasonable doubt”. Meaning there is no other reasonable culprit.

    In a civil trial it is much lower. Essentially “more likely than not.”

    Thus, being convicted in criminal court automatically makes you guilty in civil court.

    But losing a case in civil court doesn’t automatically make you guilty in criminal court.

  7. Richardson will win the Civil Suit for one simplistic reason that keeps getting overlooked…. They were at Richardson’s home, were asked several times to leave & chose to keep standing around running their mouth.

    When you are asked to leave someone’s property several times & refuse, you aren’t going to get sympathy from anyone when your @$$ gets whipped.

  8. The real question is, did he initiate contact with these women using either the crown or the top of his head?

  9. I punched a car hood that was approaching me when the driver was not looking and it stopped. So I guess I am strong enough to stop a car with my fists.

  10. Richardson will be out of the league in three years.

    LOL Browns vs LOL Jets for the Loser Bowl.

  11. Sure are alot of Browns haters and boy are you guys original. How many post said LOL in it. Go Browns!

  12. The lady who was allegedly assaulted was twice arrested for forging checks & even bought a car with a forged check, she’s just a gold-digger. Trent will be found innocent. Lol at these poor posters who wish they had a RB as talented as Trent!

  13. It really doesn’t take a lot to put a dent in a car these days. And try and get a dent repaired on a new car for less than $1500.

  14. Trent should of hired the Cleveland bus driver.

    He would have taught them a lesson!

  15. Do juries understand the difference between reasonable doubt and preponderance? Doubt it. Either they think you did it or not.

  16. This whole Richardson lawsuit thing is just about some low-rent skanks trying to cash in on his deep pocket$ after being rejected by him.

    When you have the $$$ a pro football player like Richardson makes, you become an easy target for bottom-feeders trying to take away as much money from you as they can. Richardson would serve himself better by not hanging out with such low-lifes.

  17. Whats more pathetic? That fact these “victims” cant write, or Florio’s continued attempt to insult the Browns organization.
    I guess neither is surprising considering the sources.

  18. Money hungry broads! T. Rich, know who you surround yourself with. I see a lot of hater on here. I guess Steelers fans forgot they sucked for 33 years, before Chuck fixed things. Jealous of a real fans base that supports their team regardless of how bad they are.

    Evidence that many Steelers fans are bandwagon! Last game of the year, last season, 51,000 paid attendance for a 65,000 seat Heinz Field! What, you guys only come out when things are going good?

  19. So the “victims” won’t even come to the station to clarify their statements? Yeah..this sounds like a reeeeaaaalll legit case.

  20. benrothlisberger7 has a lot of room to bash the browns with his many LOL posts over this deal with richardson. what about your stupid qb who not once, but twice has been blamed for rape? money obviously changed hands to make this go away. you are like the pot calling the kettle black

  21. The way I read it, they were trying to leave and then Richardson had his hoes jump them, one at a time of course cuz they are just as weak as the browns.

  22. Richardson needs to get his ISH together. I think the AFC North is slowing turning into Cinci’s division and could possible turn into Cleveland’s further in time with the Steelers being about as old as a geriatric center. Everyone knows Baltimore was losing pieces with the Super Bowl win like every Super Bowl winning team does so they need to take advantage of this time.

  23. People need to relax. You’re acting like he already lost the civil case. He hasn’t.

    Richardson’s lawyers just refuse to settle out of court, insist on a trial which will takes years before it’s heard and will cost the plaintiffs massive legal fees. More likely than not, they will simply go away.

    If their lawyers are actually dumb enough to go to trial, TR’s lawyers will just hammer the plaintiffs relentlessly on why they didn’t cooperate with the police.

    You actually believe that a jury, in Cleveland, is going to give these women a dime? If anything, they will just wind up having to pay HIS legal fees.

  24. Wow – you fools seem to believe whatever these women throw out there. Maybe they are…lying? Has that happened anytime recently (like the Brandon Marshall incident or innumerable other incidents)? You don’t know what happened, and I will bet any fool on this board that nothing at all ends up happening to Richardson. Civil suit or otherwise.

  25. Benrothlisberger7 it is beyond ridiculous to post 7 TIMES IN A ROW “lol @ the Browns. You don’t have much room to talk smack about rival team’s players getting into trouble. All one has to mention is that night in Milledgville when a very drunk Roethlisberger whipped out his junk and tried to force it on some coeds, forever tarring him as rapist by many.

    Why anyone would name themselves after someone like this is beyond me…..I guess with some fans it does not matter what kind of scoundrel a person is in their private time as long as they get you a ring or two. Stay classy!

  26. Rolli1967 I like your style…. I’m pretty sure they refer to Ben these days as “Rapelessberger”… I am a Browns fan but live in the heart of Steeler country & even Ben’s own people here hate him… Majority of Pennsylvanians really do not like him… That speaks volumes…..

    Listen, this whole thing is a huge distraction to Trent… First the incident & then the crown rule…. Trent just get it together brother…. Things are getting hairy at the moment & you need to decompress… Go hide out with Jim Brown & have him train you even harder in some remote place… Like Siberia! Rocky style…

    I think people are still in shock & are still coming to terms with the fact that this may be the start of Cleveland’s time… This is a great thing for us… Lets handle all the attention & focus with hared work & class & we will be just fine… I love this Browns Team! All of them!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.