Following Monday's explosive release of a security camera video showing Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice knocking out his then-fiancée Janay Palmer, there was one big question on everyone's mind: did the NFL know?
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell claimed that nobody at the NFL has seen the footage when Rice's two-game suspension was handed down. In fact, Goodell said the league "had asked law enforcement for the tape but never got to see it."
Now the Associated Press says otherwise:
A law enforcement official says he sent a video of Ray Rice punching his then-fiancee to an NFL executive three months ago, while league officers have insisted they didn't see the violent images until this week.
The person played The Associated Press a 12-second voicemail from an NFL office number on April 9 confirming the video arrived. A female voice expresses thanks and says: "You're right. It's terrible."
The official, speaking to the AP on condition of anonymity because of the ongoing investigation, says the NFL never followed up. The person can't confirm if anyone at the NFL watched the video.
ABC News reports, citing sources, that the Baltimore Ravens knew that "a surveillance video of the assault existed and that Rice's lawyer had a copy of the video, but never asked to see it."
Goodell claimed in a memo that the NFL couldn’t legally obtain the Ray Rice videos under New Jersey law. "Once a criminal investigation begins, law enforcement authorities do not share investigatory material (such as the videos here) with private parties such as the NFL," Goodell wrote in a note to chief executives and club presidents obtained by CNN. "In addition, (New Jersey's) Open Public Records Act excludes material that is generated in the context of an active law enforcement proceeding."
Someone at the NFL is lying. The question now is who knew and when did they know it. If it was Goodell, it's time for him to go. Period.