If you have been paying attention to recent sports headlines, you have likely heard about the Myles Garrett-Mason Rudolph fight that transpired on Thursday Night Football in November. If you don’t follow the NFL, here’s a quick recap:
The nation watched in horror as the 6’4”, 270-pound Cleveland Browns defensive end tore off the helmet of the much smaller Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph during a fight and smacked him in the skull with it during the final minutes of the game. Garret’s attack occurred after the two exchanged words following a completed pass. The two men wrestled each other to the ground, and upon standing up, Garret swung the helmet at Rudolph’s head, which prompted Rudolph’s teammates to enter the brawl. All of the players involved were issued hefty fines and suspensions by the NFL in varying degrees, but many believe that criminal sanctions would be justified.
In this article, an aggravated assault attorney in St. Petersburg will discuss whether or not the Myles Garrett-Mason Rudolph fight constitutes aggravated assault and explain some other important factors related to these types of cases.
This presents an interesting case. If you and I got into an altercation and you decided to swing a five pound rock at my head, it would be a very clear case of aggravated assault. According to Florida law, an assault is an intentional and unlawful threat by word or act to commit violence against another person; with the apparent ability to carry through with the threat at the time it was made. This would be elevated to an aggravated assault due to the use of a deadly weapon (the rock), and the case could be made that you were attempting to commit murder due to the location of where you struck me with the rock (the head). A hard blow to the skull with an object like that would be likely to critically injure someone’s brain, if not kill them.
Therefore, the following question must be posed: Is Garret going to face criminal charges? He certainly assaulted Rudolph, and while a football helmet isn’t normally considered a deadly weapon, the way that he used it implies otherwise. However, the answer is almost certainly “no.”
This is not due to any lack of brutality in the assault, but the context surrounding it. There is a history of egregious violence in the NFL. In 2006 for example, Tennessee Titans defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth kicked the unprotected face of Dallas Cowboys center Andre Gurode with his sharp cleats. This significantly injured him and required 30 stitches. He even suffered concussion-like symptoms afterwards. Nothing ever came of it outside of the normal suspensions and fines, the reasoning being that both players chose to participate in a sport that is violent at its core.
It just goes to show that anyone can be put in a tense situation that can get out of hand, whether it be during prime time NFL football or an intoxicated dispute at the bar. Unfortunately, here in St. Petersburg, the general public are not granted the same luxuries as NFL football players. If someone hits another person in the head with a blunt object or stabs them with a sharp object, it’s a safe bet that a serious lawsuit is to follow. If you find yourself in this scenario, contact the best aggravated assault attorney in St. Petersburg, Anthony Rickman of The Rickman Law Firm.
For a free consultation with the best aggravated assault attorney in St. Petersburg, please contact The Rickman Law Firm today.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.