On Thursday, the Santa Clara (Calif.) District Attorney’s office formally charged San Francisco 49ers linebacker Reuben Foster with felony domestic violence against his live-in girlfriend in connection with an incident in February.
According to a news release from the Deputy District Attorney Kevin Smith, Foster, 24, “physically attacked the 28-year-old woman during a February argument at their Los Gatos home, leaving her bruised and with a ruptured eardrum.”
Foster is formally charged with three felonies: domestic violence with an allegation of inflicting great bodily injury, forcefully attempting to prevent a victim from reporting a crime, and possession of an assault weapon.
He is also charged with possession of a large-capacity weapon magazine, a misdemeanor. If convicted, Foster faces more than 11 years in prison.
Foster is scheduled to be arraigned Thursday afternoon. The 49ers issued this statement, according to the San Francisco Chronicle’s Ann Killion:
“The 49ers organization is aware of today’s disturbing charges regarding Reuben Foster. We will continue to follow this serious matter. Reuben is aware that his place in our organization is under great scrutiny and will depend on what is learned through the legal process.”
According to the prosecutor, on Feb. 11, the victim flagged down a stranger’s car, asking for that person to call 911. The victim told sheriff’s deputies and Los Gatos police that Foster had dragged her by her hair, physically threw her out of the house, and punched her in the head eight to 10 times. She was treated and released at a nearby hospital.
Officials found a Sig Sauer 516 and large-capacity magazine in the home; both are illegal to possess in California.
Foster, the 31st pick in the draft last year out of Alabama, started and played 10 games for the 49ers as a rookie. Though highly talented, Foster’s injury history and character questions – he was kicked out of the Combine last year after both failing his drug test and allegedly mistreating a hospital worker during his medical checks, and was arrested in January while in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and charged with misdemeanor marijuana possession – made him a risk for many teams.
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