The San Francisco 49ers today ended defensive lineman Ray McDonald’s contract with the team citing a “pattern of poor decision making” the same day San Jose police said a woman had accused him of sexual assault. “We as an organization have notified (McDonald) and his agent that we have terminated his contract,” general manager Trent Baalke said in a statement on the 49ers’ team website. “Ray has demonstrated a pattern of poor decision-making that is no longer going to be tolerated,” Baalke said.
The statement came within only a couple of hours of a report released by San Jose police this morning stating that officers obtained a warrant to search McDonald’s East San Jose home after a woman alleged Tuesday he had sexually assaulted her on Monday. Police said that at 10:43 a.m. Tuesday a local hospital reported that a possible sexual assault victim was being treated and when police questioned her, she identified McDonald as her alleged assailant, according to police Sgt. Heather Randol. Officers from the department’s sexual assaults unit obtained and executed a warrant to search McDonald’s home at 2516 Bentley Drive in San Jose, but no one has been arrested, Randol said.
On Nov. 11, after a months-long investigation, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office decided not to file charges against McDonald in an alleged domestic violence dispute with his pregnant fiancée during a nighttime party at his home last summer. Prosecutors said that on Aug. 31, McDonald and his fiancée struggled together on a couch in his home during a fight, with the woman saying he shoved her there and he saying they both fell onto it.
Police arrested McDonald on suspicion of felony domestic violence after determining that he was the aggressor in the altercation with his fiancée, who officers said had visible injuries to her neck and arms. McDonald also caused controversy by calling a San Jose police officer, who had been working part-time performing security work for the 49ers, to the party twice that evening, the news of which prompted the Police Department to ban its officers from working off-duty for the 49ers.
When the district attorney’s office announced there would be no charges, citing a lack of evidence and conflicting accounts from witnesses about what happened at the party, McDonald stated he was “relieved” and that he had “cooperated fully with their investigation from beginning to end.” The 49ers permitted McDonald to play during the team’s current season, including all 14 of the team’s games and its loss Sunday to the Seattle Seahawks in Seattle.
The 30-year-old McDonald was selected as a third-round draft pick by the 49ers in 2007 and played eight seasons for the team, 49ers officials said. Two other players at McDonald’s position of defensive tackle, Tony Jerod-Eddie and Tank Carradine, serve as backups for the team, the 49ers said.
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