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Ben Roethlisberger Officially Suspended

4/21/2010 2:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Ben Roethlisberger Officially Suspended Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has just  received a SIX game suspension from the NFL for violating the league's Personal-Conduct Policy.

A spokesperson for the NFL announced that Ben has been informed of the decision.

Officials claim the suspension could be reduced to 4 games, if NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sees fit.

Ben will not be paid for the games he will miss -- which means he could lose nearly $3 million if he misses all six.

Along with the suspension, Ben will also have to undergo a comprehensive behavioral evaluation.

In a letter to Roethlisberger, Commish Goodell told Ben, "There is nothing about your conduct in Milledgeville that can remotely be described as admirable, responsible, or consistent with either the values of the league or the expectations of our fans.”

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79 COMMENTS

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31.

Vickie    

This is horrible. Nobody knows what went on except him and her. NOBODY!!! 6 games is way too much. He will be back better than ever. GOOOOO BEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1612 days ago
32.

Fast Earl    

Guilty until proven innocent.



In a league with the most pathetic of looses and thugs this seems way overkill.



Now all an NFL team needs to derail their opponents would be to get someone to make some scandalous allegations about their star player and they will be guilty even if no charges are brought out of the allegations.

1612 days ago
33.

Gaylord    

Well, there ya go. Big Ben gets his pee pee slapped for thinking with his little head ... again. Too bad his brain isn't as big as his pecker. What an idiot. He deserves the suspension. Maybe not because of pokin' his shaft where it shouldn't be, but because of his sheer stupidity.

1612 days ago
34.

Lonnie    

The NFL thinks dog fighting is more serious than repeatedly raping women. Time to boycott the NFL.

1612 days ago
35.

Lonnie    

Reality check for the pro-rapists:



Ben Roethlisberger: No Justice, No Play?



Southpaw



by DAVE ZIRIN



April 20, 2010



Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger should be thanking the heavens that he possesses the unique skill to throw a football sixty yards. If he was Ben the 28-year-old mill worker accused of raping a 20-year-old student in the bathroom of a college town bar, he'd be in prison awaiting trial.



Ben Roethlisberger should be thanking the heavens that he is white. If he was Ben the black guy accused of sexual assault in Georgia, he might not even make it to trial.
Ben Roethlisberger should be thanking the heavens that he is rich. If he didn't have the lawyers to block any volunteering of his DNA, as well as lawyers poised to spend hours investigating the last details of a 20-year-old woman's sexual history, he would be wearing the steel bracelets. And he likely wouldn't have had his accuser, after going through the ordeal of a "rape kit," deciding that a high-publicity rape trial was not how she wanted to spend the next two years of her life.



Instead, because he resides on a white pedestal of wealth and fame, Ben Roethlisberger gets Ocmulgee, Georgia, District Attorney Frederick Bright telling Ben to "grow up" and little more. He gets DA Bright saying that he couldn't indict because he didn't think the case could be proven "beyond a reasonable doubt" or that he could make the case "100 percent."



And here I thought that was a judge or jury's job, to determine whether a case could be proven "beyond a reasonable doubt." I thought that evidence is then gathered and presented at a trial. I thought that, as the saying goes, a DA could indict a ham sandwich if he saw fit. Of course, evidence was hard to come by after police didn't seal the bathroom in question. In addition, investigating Milledgeville police officer Jerry Blash had been posing for pictures with Roethlisberger earlier in the evening. After questioning the accuser, it has been reported, Blash made derogatory comments about her. Blash has since been forced to resign.



It's understandable that people who have been following this case only out of the corner of their eye might think that it is just a classic "he said/she said" situation. No charges were brought, and women try to scam pro jocks all the time, right? People who say that haven't read the 572-page police report. They also haven't read the civil suit that came out nine months earlier in which Roethlisberger was accused of sexual assault. The reports are so similar, so patterned, so damning, that you are left with one of two conclusions: either Roethlisberger's 20-year-old accuser is a sociopathic genius who set the millionaire up brilliantly, or Roethlisberger has a patterned modus operendi for how he goes about sexually assaulting women. Either in the middle of the night, in a state of addled inebriation and having sustained a bump on the head, the accuser recalled details of the Lake Tahoe police report (which she had memorized on the off chance she would meet Roethlsiberger in Milledgeville, Georgia), and she got him. Or Ben Roethlisberger did something very wrong on the night in question.



So far, Roethlisberger has chosen to not rebut one word in the 572-page report. Instead, he read a seventy-four-second statement, in which he said, "I'm truly sorry for the disappointment and negative attention I brought to my family, my teammates, coaches, the Rooneys and the NFL." If there was nothing to these charges, there would be no reason to apologize. If there was nothing to these charges, Roethlisberger's bodyguard Ed Joyner, a Pennsylvania state trooper, would not be suffering an internal investigation by his department. The staties want to know more about the part of the police report where Joyner is said to have denied people access to the bathroom where Roethlisberger was with his accuser.



Now the burden is on NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to show whether there will in fact be any punishment for Big Ben. Goodell has the power of judge and jury to indefinitely suspend players and order them into counseling, regardless of whether they were convicted of any crime. Anyone who has read this column knows that I think that this is an unconscionable part of the collective bargaining agreement. It's been used primarily against players caught smoking weed and, most notably, in the case of Michael Vick, who was suspended indefinitely for fighting and abusing dogs. But it is a power that Goodell has and has shown he will exercise. Now he will show the world whether violence against women matters less to the NFL than violence against dogs. In a league where an accepted culture of sexism exists from the cheerleaders to the commercials, to the locker room, Goodell better choose wisely. Women make up the fastest-growing sector of NFL fans. For far too long, they have been treated as if they were invisible or worse. It's not too much to ask that the NFL send a message that misogyny and violence against women is not acceptable under any cir***stance and a 28-year-old quarterback getting underage women drunk for bar sex will not be seen as "boys will be boys."



Roethlisberger should have to donate a portion of his salary to rape crisis and battered women's shelters. He should have to speak to young kids about the fact that "No means no." He should, in other words, have to do everything that Michael Vick has had to do to make amends. Yes, Vick was convicted and Roethlisberger wasn't. But if Vick's entourage had lawyered up instead of turning state's evidence against him, it might have been a different story. Roethlisberger went out on the town not with his normal entourage but with off-duty cops: people who know the value of silence. He had a game plan. Goodell had better send a strong message: whatever Roethlisberger was trying to do that night, it's not a game.



About Dave Zirin
Dave Zirin is The Nation's sports editor. He is the author of Welcome to the Terrordome: the Pain Politics and Promise of Sports (Haymarket) and A People's History of Sports in the United States (The New Press). His writing has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Sports Illustrated.com and The Progressive. He is the host of Sirius/XM's Edge of Sports Radio.



1612 days ago
36.

PolarBear Is Retarded    

This is in response to Paul. How has Tiger Woods been let off the hook? He has been bashed on tv, radio, internet and magazines since November relentlessly for adultery!!!!!!! Cheating on your wife is far less serious than sexual assault! Adultery isn't even a crime! Ask any woman if they would rather be sexually assaulted or cheated on!!!! The Tiger Woods story got blown way out of proportion because his wife is a pretty blonde. He now has to become the white mans bitch and they are watching him like a hawk! It's like "we let you play our sport and marry our women, how dare you lose your temper or get into any trouble! We white people must punish you now! You'll know this is truth so don't even start with the race card comments!

1612 days ago
37.

gimmeabreak    

"Too bad he's not a golfer, then he wouldn't have to worry about ANY kind of penalty! Isn't it interesting who we get all fired-up about being "punished," and who we let off the hook? Can you say degenerate...er, Tiger?" - Posted at 11:20 AM on Apr 21, 2010 by Paul



Don't be an idiot! No ones accused Tiger of RAPING THEM. Cheating on your wife just isn't in the same league. And i'm pretty sure the lost sponsorships have cost him a hell of a lot more then the 6 million Ben stands to lose IF he misses all six games.

1612 days ago
38.

gimmeabreak    

Oops, i meant the 3 million he satands to lose if he misses all six games.

1612 days ago
39.

Georgia    

Once maybe a fluke, but two similiar incidents and no comment from him, truly sad that being a professional athlete apparently puts you above the law. He is a s***bag and should get so much more than 6 game penalty.

1612 days ago
40.

Missy    

This guy is a walking train wreck. Everywhere he goes trouble occurs. At first we gave him the benefit of the doubt, but this guy is a pig. An all american male skank

1612 days ago
41.

rex kramer    

Douche bag or not, he wasn't even charged. That's the bottom line.

1612 days ago
42.

B    

Not really - no you are wrong. Steelers don't play the Jets in the first 6 games. Please read next time.

1612 days ago
43.

gimmeabreak    

"Stupid. Whether or not what he did was right or wrong, they don't own him when he's not playing football. They want to control everything. Football is not his damn job 365 days a year. Idiots. If he did sexual assault, it is up to the courts to decide his punishment, not a sorry football commissioner on a power trip. One thing has absolutely nothing to do with the other. When you commit a crime, you go to court and/or jail. you don't go to see the NFL commissioner. Roger Goodell is a desk job paper pushing loser! Like David Stern fining everyone who has their own opinion. Their is no such thing as freedom of speech to him." - Posted at 1:24 PM on Apr 21, 2010 by Terry



Dear Terry, you ignorant dumbass. When it comes to his conduct off of the field the Steelers do own him 24/7. When he signed that multi-million dollar contract to play pro football part of that contract states he will be held to a high standard of conduct at all times because he is a role model and his conduct reflects on the Steelers and the NFL. Slumming around bars getting wasted and accused of rape by drunken women is a violation of the conduct clause of his contract. Therefore they have every right to sanction his sorry ass to the tune of millions of dollars. It's really that simple, they own his ass.

1612 days ago
44.

LeAnn    

I work in Milledgeville, GA. I do not believe that he is guilty. I don't know him or her. Nothing about this story makes sense. If a rape occurs there is evidence, esp. right after the event. I don't know if sex occured, but if it did then somebody went into the wrong bathroom(the "attack" supposedly happened there). I do not believe for a minute that everyone in the club would watch him drag an unwilling girl into the bathroom and do nothing. I also think it is wrong to punish someone for an unproven crime. He has every right to go to a bar and celebrate his birthday. The man should be allowed to play football. The girl should re-evaluate her life. She is either a liar or a fool. I am a rape victim and I did put myself in a situation where I was unable to defend myself or even think coherently(although I did say NO). I am not saying I deserved it, but I am saying I was an idiot and KNEW I was endangering myself by being drunk as a skunk. I was just so drunk that I didn't care. That was 25 years ago, thank God I am smarter now!

1612 days ago
45.

Me    

All these if he was black remarks crack me up. Not big on sports but isnt there a black player named kobe bryant or something thats doing perty good after he had a girl accuse him of the same thing?

1612 days ago
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