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Haynesworth pleads no contest to lesser assault charge

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By PFW staff

A day before his trial was to begin, Patriots DT Albert Haynesworth pleaded no contest on Monday to a simple assault charge in a Washington, D.C. courthouse.

Accused of fondling a waitress at a Washington hotel last February, Haynesworth agreed to alcohol abuse assessment and a psychological-social assessment, along with staying away from the victim and performing community service within the next 18 months. If he does that, the charge will be dropped.

Originally, Haynesworth faced a more serious charge of sexual assault. The government chose to instead pursue a lesser charge for a variety of reasons, according to the Washington Post, including allegations that both sides had offered money to influence the outcome of the case and that the victim was not willing to testify.

Had he been found guilty of sexual assault, Haynesworth could have faced up to six months in jail.

The case will be reviewed by the NFL under its personal-conduct policy, and Haynesworth could still face a fine or suspension from commissioner Roger Goodell.

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