Kenrick Ellis' legal case resolved with plea agreement, victim's attorney says Published: Thursday, May 17, 2012, 4:16 PM Updated: Thursday, May 17, 2012, 4:20 PM
By Jenny Vrentas/The Star-Ledger
Share Email Print
Robert Sciarrino/The Star-LedgerKenrick Ellis was drafted by the Jets in the third round of last year's draft.
Kenrick Ellis has had a legal case pending for his entire tenure with the Jets, but that case has wrapped up today with a plea agreement, the victim's attorney said today.
The Jets defensive lineman was due to face trial on a malicious wounding felony charge next week, but S. Howard Woodson said his client and the victim in the case, Dennis Eley, has reluctantly agreed to a plea agreement for a lesser charge.
According to Woodson, the terms of the agreement are that Ellis will plead guilty to assault and battery, a misdemeanor charge.
That plea will come with six months of active jail time, but per Virginia law, he will only have to serve half, i.e. 90 days in jail. He could also receive credit for time served.
One potential complication with the case was that Ellis faced the possibility of being deported if convicted of a felony, because he is a U.S. permanent resident, ESPN New York reported. It appears that Ellis is now safe from deportation by pleading to a misdemeanor, though the Commonwealth's Attorney could not be reached to verify.
The case stemmed from an April 2010 incident while Ellis was a student at Hampton University. The Jets selected Ellis in the third round of last year's draft despite his pending legal issues and said they were comfortable with the risk.
Woodson said his client will likely continue to pursue a civil claim against Ellis. It was originally filed last year for $3 million, but the amount could be less given the outcome of the criminal case.
Ellis declined to answer questions about his legal situation yesterday because the case was still pending.