Ravens running back Ray Rice knocked his fiancee unconscious in an altercation at an Atlantic City casino over the weekend, according to a complaint filed by police, who said Wednesday that they have referred the case to county prosecutors for review.
The revelation came as a video clip showing the aftermath of the incident was posted online. The 50-second video, obtained by the website TMZ, shows Rice lifting fiancee Janay Palmer by her arms out of an elevator in the Revel Casino and laying her on the ground. She appears limp as he pulls her legs away from the elevator's doors and props her up.
Contacted about the allegations in the summons, Rice's Philadelphia-based attorney, Michael Diamondstein, declined to comment. Earlier in the day, he said the online video clip was authentic but incomplete.
"The video that has been put up by TMZ shows the very end of what transpired between Ray and his fiancee," said Diamondstein, who said he and Rice would "not try this case in the media."
"We are confident that by the time all of the facts are in the open, the public will have a complete and true picture of what actually transpired, and we just ask that the public remember what a high-character, good person Ray is, and that they reserve judgment until all the facts are out."
An attorney for Palmer could not be reached.
A Ravens spokesman said: "We have seen the video, this is a serious matter and we are currently gathering more information." Owner Steve Bisciotti declined to comment.
Rice, 27, has been one of the Ravens' top players for years, with his success burnished by high-profile anti-bullying efforts and sponsorships. This week's legal trouble comes on the heels of his worst season as a starter.
Fallout from the incident continued Wednesday, as Rice pulled out of a charity fundraiser scheduled for Friday in Baltimore. A source told The Baltimore Sun that Rice's arrest would be reviewed by the NFL under its personal-conduct policy.
Atlantic City police also said they had asked the county prosecutor's office to review the case and "ensure appropriate charges are considered."
Rice and Palmer were arrested and charged Saturday morning with simple assault, then released with a summons to appear in municipal court. A court date scheduled next week for Rice has been postponed. The charge, punishable by up to six months in jail, requires prosecutors to show that a suspect attempted to cause or caused bodily injury. It is considered a "disorderly persons offense" in New Jersey.
The charges against Rice and Palmer are less severe than the New Jersey crime of aggravated assault, which involves the use of a weapon or an attempt to cause "serious" bodily injury.
Police said the couple refused medical attention and did not report any injuries to police. On Sunday, Rice's attorneys called the incident a "very minor physical altercation."
A copy of the summons issued to Rice says he "committed assault by attempting to cause bodily injury" to the 26-year-old Palmer, "specifically by striking her with his hand, rendering her unconscious, at the Revel Casino."
The summons for Palmer says she struck Rice with her hand.
Rice, who starred at Rutgers University in New Jersey, visited the Revel Casino on Atlantic City's boardwalk Friday night with a group that included Palmer. They attended a burlesque show, where a club manager reported that they appeared to be in good spirits.
Casino security called police at about 2:50 a.m. Saturday, and officers watched surveillance video of an altercation between the pair in which they struck each other with their hands, police have said.
A player doesn't have to be convicted of a crime to be punished under the NFL policy. The NFL can choose to levy discipline if the player pleads guilty or no contest to a lesser offense or disposes of a case through a diversionary program, deferred adjudication, a conditional dismissal or probation.
Rice has no history of off-field issues, though first-time offenders have been suspended in the past.
NFL discipline can include suspensions, fines, banishment from the league, a probationary period in which conditions have to be satisfied before reinstatement, or a formal reprimand.