Before Roger Goodell, Tyreek Hill’s Fifth Amendment rights won’t save him

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Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill won’t be prosecuted for hurting his three-year-old child, even though prosecutors believe someone hurt Hill’s three-year-old child. A prosecution won’t occur because both Hill and the boy’s mother, Crystal Espinal, can invoke their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination and refuse to cooperate with the investigation and, ultimately, to testify at trial.

That won’t save Hill from the scrutiny of the NFL.

Here’s the key language from the Personal Conduct Policy: “Because the Fifth Amendment’s protection against self-incrimination does not apply in a workplace investigation, the league will reserve the right to compel a player to cooperate in its investigations even when he is the target of a pending law enforcement investigation or proceeding. A player’s refusal to speak to a league investigator under such circumstances will not preclude an investigation from proceeding or discipline from being imposed.”

Given Hill’s history — he pleaded guilty before entering the NFL to assaulting Espinal while she was pregnant — and the age of the child, the NFL should do what the prosecutor couldn’t do. Specifically, the NFL should presume that Hill is guilty, unless and until Hill persuasively convinces the league that he isn’t.

If he won’t talk to the league, he’s guilty. If he talks to the league but he tells a story that isn’t believable or consistent, he’s guilty. If Espinal tries to take the blame but does so in a way that, given her clear financial interest in protecting Hill, seems flimsy or not credible, he’s guilty.

Indeed, if Hill isn’t guilty he should be committed to bringing to justice whoever injured his child. And it’s fair to assume that Hill and Espinal have circled the wagons to protect each other from potential incarceration.

While that apparently will fly in Johnson County, Kansas (some would say the prosecutor should charge both of them with a crime and let a jury sort it all out, if Hill and Espinal both refuse to testify), it won’t fly at 345 Park Avenue. Especially since Hill escaped scrutiny for assaulting Espinal at a time when he was not yet subject to the Personal Conduct Policy.

87 responses to “Before Roger Goodell, Tyreek Hill’s Fifth Amendment rights won’t save him

  1. I said it in the other thread and I’ll say it here too. As a Chief’s fan and a Deputy Sheriff I can say this , he needs to go, not from KC, but from the NFL. Fact is a child was hurt, his damn arm was broken. A crime was committed and before anyone says, “No proof it was him”, I say that’s a BS excuse, either he did it, or he knows who did it. Either way he’s wrong, either he abuses children, or he protects those that do. Make a stand NFL, make all of them understand there is a line and it will not be crossed, no matter of your skill or popularity.

  2. I hope he doesn’t simply get away with this – hopefully, the NFL will do the right thing. There simply is no place in free society for people who hurt children. And it certainly sounds like he was involved, as was the woman.

  3. some would say the prosecutor should charge both of them with a crime and let a jury sort it all out
    ————————————————————————
    But then if the jury only convicts one or neither of them, the other could sue for false arrest and defamation. Throwing charges around willy-nilly is not the proper way to do a prosecution. Wait until you have proof. On of these two may very well admit guilt to a friend or reporter later on and then you can prosecute.

  4. He will get a fine and 6 to 8 games. He will return and once he starts scoring TDs again no one will care. Fan outcry will go away and it will be like it didn’t happen until it does again. The morals of NFL fans are ridiculously backwards. I said it earlier, you stand up vs a government you will be run out of the league but you can be a heinous criminal and be allowed back in and no one will protest saying they won’t watch. There was very little outcry when he beat his pregnant wife and there will be very little outcry here in a few months.

  5. I don’t always agree with the commissioner, but hurting a 3 year old kid is the lowest of lows. I hope they come down on Hill hard!

  6. So, I watched the press conference, and there was no mention of taking the 5th. The DA said there was not enough evidence to prove who hurt the child. So, to just assume that Tyreek is guilty is just the overflow from your preconceived notions. If he is guilty, then yes, he needs to go. If he isn’t, then he should be ok. He absolutely should cooperate with the NFL and team investigations, and if he doesn’t, then he needs to go. But this entire article essentially insinuates that he is guilty, when he may not be.

  7. Men that hurt children need to be in prison. Not playing a child’s game for millions. What a waste…

  8. billswillnevermove says:
    April 24, 2019 at 4:35 pm
    Wow! If true he broke his kids arm, he should be banned for life.

    I Agree, but zero evidence Hill broke the kids arm, so here we are.

  9. sinsor13 says:
    April 24, 2019 at 4:35 pm

    I said it in the other thread and I’ll say it here too. As a Chief’s fan and a Deputy Sheriff I can say this , he needs to go, not from KC, but from the NFL. Fact is a child was hurt, his damn arm was broken. A crime was committed and before anyone says, “No proof it was him”, I say that’s a BS excuse, either he did it, or he knows who did it. Either way he’s wrong, either he abuses children, or he protects those that do. Make a stand NFL, make all of them understand there is a line and it will not be crossed, no matter of your skill or popularity.

    Very well said, and I wholeheartedly agree with you.

  10. “kcflake says:
    April 24, 2019 at 4:43 pm
    billswillnevermove says:
    April 24, 2019 at 4:35 pm
    Wow! If true he broke his kids arm, he should be banned for life.

    I Agree, but zero evidence Hill broke the kids arm, so here we are.”

    If it was a Raider, Bronco, or LA player you wouldn’t be saying that. Don’t let a game corrupt your morals. He either did it, or knows who did. He is either a child abuser, or protects those that do. DEFEND THAT!

  11. The inconsistency with which the NFL prosecutes these things is stunning.

    A number of players after Ray Rice seem to be getting off far easier than he did.

    Not commenting on the punishments and whether or not they’re appropriate, rather the inconsistency. The NFL needs to man up and put out some objective standards, not something that depends upon what kind of mood Roger’s in.

  12. So many people here (based on the comments and likes vs dislikes) who are so sure that Tyreek is guilty, even when the prosecutor’s office is not. It’s like a mob around here. And, yes, as a father myself, this whole thing sickens me. No one should ever hurt a child. It’s the worst of the worst. And I pray that whoever did this is found out and held accountable. But stop throwing stones when you don’t know for sure who to throw those stones at. If the DA doesn’t know, you sure as hell don’t.

  13. And what if the child was hurt because each of the adults thought the other one was with the child when in fact the child were unsupervised. Lots of kids fall down steps, or jumped off chairs, and done other things that hurt themselves in the brief moments where the parents made a mistake.
    This would then be a situation that requires parenting classes and supervision visits from Child Services instead of prison and destroying someone’s career.

    Wait until the facts are known before you jump to conclusions about guilt and push for punishment!

  14. In all the ‘this or that punishment’ as well as the ‘league should or shouldn’t’ whatever we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that as a result of Espinal’s and/or Hill’s actions or inactions somewhere there is an injured child that has been removed from all they know as a result. More thoughts should be with the child and his future than any perspective league actions

  15. Given there’s no video, no hard evidence – Mr. Hill is going to consider himself lucky to get an 8 game suspension.

    There’s a cold place in hell for anyone that messes with a 3 year old – especially their own child.

  16. If it walks like a duck and talks like duck it it’s a duck! KC fans should tell politely tell their football team not to bring lowlifes into their community just because they run fast.

  17. Though Guy, show us how an NFL star can beat a kid. Adrian got a year for a switch to the tail. What do you get for broken bones?

  18. They should offer two options. Goodell rules as a judge or the fans vote on his guilt or innocence. His choice….

  19. Yet AP is still playing, and people are cheering for him and wearing his Jersey. Unbelievable.

  20. Violence against children seems to get far too much of a free pass from adult men and women alike.

    Hit an adult woman, and it’s the end of the world; hit a child, and there’s a tidal wave of excuses, starting with “discipline”. Because both men and women take part in it, and neither wants to accept responsibility.

    That needs to stop. Hurting a child needs to be seen as the serious issue it is, and carry even higher scrutiny and consequences than adult interactions.

  21. DA’s remarks we way out of line. Basically we have no evidence but a crime was committed.. Seriously? Tyreek was out of town when it occurred. Could not Tyreek say he does not know what happened and be telling the truth? Couldn’t the GF say the same thing and be lying? After all we’re full of hypotheticals being certain evidence in this forum. Guilty until innocent around here. Tyreek could even have said that he thinks the GF did it but the DA has no evidence of that so they go on TV and say a crime was committed but we cant prove it? KC Police and DA are a joke. Why would they even go on a national forum to tell us this and not just drop the charges citing no evidence? Why the huge production? Just stupid.

  22. To many people put this game before their morals. I have no doubt if he was cut from KC another team would sign him. The same people calling for his head here would be talking about how he learned his lesson. This is beyond a game and profits. Until the NFL learns that it’s just one more shove pushing me away from this game that I grew up loving.

  23. And what if the child was hurt because each of the adults thought the other one was with the child when in fact the child were unsupervised. Lots of kids fall down steps, or jumped off chairs, and done other things that hurt themselves in the brief moments where the parents made a mistake.

    If it was something as small as your kid tripping and breaking his arm why would you not just come out and say that, unless you’re trying to hide something?

  24. Seems to me that Posters are missing the point. An innocent child had his arm broken, that’s a fact( or evidence). One of his parents did it, and the one that didn’t abuse the child is protecting the one that did, instead of protecting the child. Either way, both parents are guilty! One for abusing the child, the other for protecting the guilty parent.

  25. He failed his child in the worst way when he beat his girlfriend in her pregnant stomach.
    He did so again either by breaking his own baby’s arm or by protecting the person who did.
    He’s the absolute worst kind of human being, and if his only defenders are the dumbest of KC fans, that’s still far too many.

  26. Put the kid on the stand Roger get to the bottom of this one way or another
    Maybe lie detector. My bet is on Hill did’t he already punch this child
    while in his mothers womb? Believe it was a gut punch at 8 months.

  27. A joint prosecution sounds good, but you need to meet whatever the Kansas state law definition of probable cause is to charge both to avoid a claim of unlaw arrest. Why double your problem? Go after one, the other taking the 5th on the stand just makes the one on trial appear to be guilty.

  28. This dude is the lowest of the low. Some may say that if there is no “concrete evidence” then we can’t assume he is guilty. Then you just take two seconds to think about what he did in the past punching his pregnant girlfriend in her stomach and choking her, and your concrete evidence has to start turning to common sense. He did it.
    The 3 year old’s arm was broken, if the mom did it, don’t you think she would have at least come forward and said she did? That would have taken the heat off scumbag and he could still get his mega millions. Instead her silence is a lot more telling.

  29. So if the previous reports are correct. The fiance’ called authorities or Tyreek Hill after the child’s injury. Between the time they got to the house to speak with her, she must have changed her story to “I don’t know how it happened”? In an obvious effort to protect the family cash cow. Meanwhile TH has a prior domestic violence guilty admission and conviction. Yeah I don’t see the NFL letting him play this year.

  30. seals1 says:
    Adrian got a year for a switch to the tail.
    ==

    Adrian got a year for beating his child until his testicles bled and stuffing leaves in his mouth. Down’t downplay it as a mere “switch to the tail.”

  31. Half of you complaining about allegations towards Hill are the exact same people who don’t care or see the problem with police brutality. These are “allegations” and your calling for his job. There’s video of Police shooting unarmed people and you don’t do or say anything but complain about players kneeling…. Bunch of lost people. However, If Hill did it he should go to prison.

  32. Vince McMahon is just sitting there off stage with a bag full of money hoping the NFL kicks him

  33. “I Agree, but zero evidence Hill broke the kids arm, so here we are.”

    First of all you don’t know what evidence they have. Second they have enough evidence that they believe a crime has been committed, but Hill and the woman are protecting each other or someone else, so either one of them did it and they are protecting each other, or they’re both protecting a 3rd party who did it. Third, either way Hill is either the abuser or someone complicit in the crime for protecting the abuser.

  34. pointtwopsiistheissue says:

    April 24, 2019 at 5:06 pm

    Seems to me that Posters are missing the point. An innocent child had his arm broken, that’s a fact( or evidence). One of his parents did it, and the one that didn’t abuse the child is protecting the one that did, instead of protecting the child. Either way, both parents are guilty! One for abusing the child, the other for protecting the guilty parent.
    ______

    Wrong. Tyreek, again, was out of town. He very well does not know. He could even say he is certain the GF did it but the DA has no evidence.

  35. According to the DA a crime was committed against a 3 year old child. But they cannot “prove” who committed the crime. The implication is that it was either the mother or the father, and neither is talking. So the DA cannot prove guilt. Unfortunately this is the case in many domestic situations; and, the DA is smart enough to know that on the criminal front he cannot expect the 3 year old to be his star witness. Family Court will hopefully look out for the child.

    Because this is the situation in many domestic cases (parties will not testify against the other), the court system does not always work as the punishment. However, as for the NFL, the conduct policy would seem to apply both to someone who abuses children and to someone who aids, abets or covers up such abuse. So, the NFL can punish.

  36. “If he won’t talk to the league, he’s guilty. If he talks to the league but he tells a story that isn’t believable or consistent, he’s guilty. If Espinal tries to take the blame but does so in a way that, given her clear financial interest in protecting Hill, seems flimsy or not credible, he’s guilty.”

    Soooooo…. he’s guilty.

  37. “A prosecution won’t occur because both Hill and the boy’s mother, Crystal Espinal, can invoke their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination”

    So prosecution WON’T occur simply because they CAN invoke the 5th? Don’t they have to actually invoke the 5th? They won’t not prosecute just because they COULD invoke it.

  38. I wanna start off by stating i condemn any and all violence against children and feel those who commit such acts should be punished by a court of law. My problem is people being tried in a court of the media…where the facts are little known or worse yet hearsay. We rush to judgement and demand punishment after reading a 200 word article that is based more on opinion than fact. Criminal cases in real life aren’t committed, apprehended, tried and sentenced in 60 minutes like we see on TV. Law enforcement and the prosecutors investigate complaints like this with diligence and duty for days, weeks, months sometimes years. Perhaps more shall be revealed ..perhaps this is all we will know. Did something happen..yes arms don’t break on their own. Was it an accident and due to Hill’s history that raised a red flag…did someone intentionally injure the child? i can honestly say i don’t know…therefore i am not gonna pass judgement today. Instead i will say a prayer for the child and the 2 unborn children that are about to enter this world under the care of Hill and Ms Espinal.

  39. If he protests his innocence then he is obstructing justice and deserves to be punished for that, even if there is no other evidence against him.

  40. Either he gives up who did it or he’s banned for life, and if he does, ban him a year if/when he blames it on someone else.

  41. Kids jump off things, they fall, etc.

    Just because a kid came away with a broken arm does not imply that either the parents did it or are at fault that it happened.

    I was in ER room last weekend and a little girl came in with her arm clearly broken. She fell backwards out of a slide. While it sucks that it happened, there isn’t anybody to blame for it.

    Goodell should ask the kid what happened and leave it at that. My 2 year old can tell you how he hurt himself, Hill’s 3 year old should be able to do the same. Since Goodell doesn’t play by the same rules as police, he can probably force the interview with the child or give an automatic suspension – the same as Brady with the phone.

  42. My thoughts are with the kids and making sure they are protected. It is amazing to read all of the negative responses. I am not willing to put a person before the firing squad without knowing for sure he committed the crime, however, it appears that there are a lot of people that are willing to pull the trigger without knowing.

  43. The guy sat on his pregnant girlfriend’s chest and punched her in the stomach. He admitted to it. Absolute psychopath. I have no idea why this guy was ever allowed to get a whiff of the NFL in the first place, no normal job would hire anyone when that pops up on their background check.

  44. Did he destroy his cellphone?

    With no other evidence that in itself is a 4 game suspension. Millon dollar fine, and loss of a #1 draft choice.

    Per Roger the overpaid clown that runs the league.

  45. A three year old is fully capable of saying who hit him. The cops know who did it, just no evidence I suspect. And if the cops know, Roger will know.

  46. If she takes the blame to protect the money interest, couldn’t that be used in an actual criminal trial then? I doubt there would be any kind of ability to hide those statements from criminal trials (e.g. no ‘nfl / player confidentiality’ agreement)

  47. It’s odd that if they really didn’t do it, they don’t seem to be demanding the police find the culprit. Nor does he seem to be using his money to hire the best private investigators he can hire…

  48. “He was out of town” a poster says, so that clears Hill. Are you serious???, that has NO impact on the situation as everyone who works in the medical field knows. Many, many times a fracture is diagnosed even days after the incident!
    Repeat days!!!

  49. Not defending THill in any way, if the allegations are true. Seems they may well be. But, Goodell has so royally screwed up EVERY TIME he tries to mitigate and discipline these things, that he has to recuse, or delegate to someone competent. For the sake of the next CBA, if nothing else. He’s a clueless fmessup.

  50. As for the “zero evidence” crowd. Even if he didn’t do it, he’s guilty of negligence for not protecting his child. That would be the grounds for removing the child from his home.

  51. congrats, tyreek! that $100 million dollar deal that went to Frank Clark was supposed to go to you!!!! now you get pennies in comparison.

  52. hopeyouguessedmyname says:
    April 24, 2019 at 6:19 pm
    It’s odd that if they really didn’t do it, they don’t seem to be demanding the police find the culprit. Nor does he seem to be using his money to hire the best private investigators he can hire…
    —————–
    I am sure they arent claiming that a masked man attacked the boy. They are probably claiming that the boy fell or ran into something.

    There must have been some evidence to the contrary if the judge removed the child from his home.

  53. torgow says:
    April 24, 2019 at 6:53 pm
    I really do hope he is booed for the rest of his career, with every touch of the ball, on the road and at home.

    ______________________

    Once he get’s back onto the field, within 4 weeks, you won’t hear a mention of his problems. he’ll go back to catching touchdowns and everybody will rejoice.

  54. Presume he is guilty that’s b.s I hate the chiefs but how can you say presume him guilty what if and it’s only a what if he didn’t break his arm. I say the commissioner give him 1 game and the chiefs should suspend him indefinitely like Kareem Hunt was last year….

  55. I disagree with Florio much more than I agree with him. But his comments are spot on here.

  56. So much certainty in peoples opinions here.

    Mob justice doesn’t benefit anyone, and neither does a activist media leading the March. But enjoy your votes and supposed internet moral superiority, it speaks more towards group think as opposed to free thinking.

  57. …let’s not forget children’s services HAS removed the child from the home. That’s all we need to know…Hill or his wife injured the child plain and simple. Kick Hill out of the NFL and prosecute him.

  58. Not BuyingIt says:
    April 24, 2019 at 4:36 pm
    The media shouldn’t be leading a mob to determine one’s Justice.

    132 276 Rate This
    ——————————–
    276 down votes. Astounding. Over 2-1 against. 132 people out of 400+ that the media should be under scrutiny even though it’s their job to scrutinize the powers that be, tragically low. Even the Romans wondered ‘Who shall watch the watchers themselves?’.

  59. Any person who hurts their own child is a sick individual!

    ___________________________________________________________

    I’d love to meet the person who “thumbs down” this

  60. The irony here. Chiefs were about to make Hill the league’s highest paid wr @ $20 million per year.

    This news drops and they back away from any long term commitment.

    Chiefs use the salary cap savings to invest in, you guessed it, Frank Clark – with the same checkered history.

    Hill will almost definitely be available for the playoffs. So effectively, Chiefs could wind up winning a Super Bowl all because Hills deeds allowed the franchise to extract another year to n his rookie deal.

    NFL cannot allow that to happen based on Hills history and the Chiefs reckless abandon in signing players.

  61. Hill’s track record is not very good. If he isn’t co operating just suspend him for the season.
    His behavior is out of control.

  62. kcflake says:
    April 24, 2019 at 4:42 pm
    Zero Evidence. Zero Charges. The NFL should butt out.

    =======

    Dude, if someone hurt MY kid, I’d rip that guys stinking arms off.

    What has Hill done to seek justice for his kid?

    He’s guilty…… trust me on this. No father acts like this.

  63. Thank goodness an officer didn’t tase Hill or his girl. Everyone pissed that Hill may pay for his issues would be up in arms about the officer. Suspend him at the least for not protecting his own child. Clearly he or both can not protect this child based on their history.

  64. They never said anyone pleaded the 5th, they said there was not enough evidence to proceed. And even the Dr said it was a common break not a forceful one. Ps Hill was never under investigation.

  65. Some would say they should charge both and let the jury sort it out should know that really isn’t how criminal law works or even should work. That is what is called supposition (not a foundation of American law) and a waste of resources. Not saying he isn’t guilty, but while speculation is great, really isn’t how the system works. And outside of the NFL or any other employer, the 5th really is applicable.

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