TMZ, which dropped a bombshell on Monday with the release of the video showing Ray Rice knocking out his fiancee, reports today that no one from the NFL requested a copy of the video tape showing the brutal elevator encounter.
Here’s what TMZ is reporting:
Sources connected with the Revel Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City tell TMZ Sports … NO ONE from the NFL ever asked for the video inside the elevator … video that was compelling enough to get Rice instantly fired.
Sources who worked at the casino at the time of the incident tell us … if the NFL had asked for the video, they would have gladly complied.
Without video … Goodell blindly justified the initial 2-game suspension, based on the only evidence they had — from the 2 people in the elevator, who called it mutual combat.
Multiple sources tell TMZ Sports … the casino made a copy of the elevator surveillance video for police. We’re also told Rice’s lawyer had a copy of the video which he got in the criminal case.
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said on Monday that the league saw the video for the first time on Monday. Here’s part of Aiello’s statement:
We requested from law enforcement any and all information about the incident, including the video from inside the elevator. That video was not made available to us and no one in our office has seen it until today.
On Monday night Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh held a much-anticipated press conference during which he spent more time ducking questions about Ray Rice and the decision earlier in the day to cut him, than answering them.
When asked about why no one from the Ravens saw the tape, this was Harbaugh’s response: “I don’t know why that would be a hard thing to understand. It wasn’t made available to us. It wasn’t there for us. As far as I know yeah, it wasn’t something we ever saw or had access to.”
Yet it’s not uncommon for the NFL to employ security officials that have previously worked for law enforcement.
The Miami Dolphins hired former FBI agent Joe Cicini to oversee the team’s security after the bullying incident that followed Jonathan Martin and Richie Incognito. The current NFL chief security officer, Jeffrey Miller, was once the commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police. The previous NFL chief security officer, Milt Ahlerich, was a long-time FBI agent before taking the job.
So it’s really difficult to believe that all of those brilliant minds in law enforcement failed to ask for the Ray Rice video.
The Ravens senior director of security is Darren Sanders, who had worked as a detective in the Baltimore Police Department. Sanders took the job with the Ravens just months after he accidentally shot himself in 2004 while sitting court side at an ACC basketball game while working as bodyguard for Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti.