Jerramy Stevens, the husband of U.S. women's national team goalkeeper Hope Solo, defended her on Saturday, telling USA Today that the domestic violence controversy surrounding his wife is “a witch hunt.”
Last year, Solo was charged with two counts of fourth-degree domestic violence assault for allegedly striking her half-sister and nephew in Richland, Wash. A judge dismissed the charges in January saying that a lack of cooperation from witnesses prejudiced the case.
An Outside The Lines report published on June 7, the day before the USA's first World Cup game, cited previously unread police reports and sworn depositions and painted a stark picture of a violent, aggressive Solo as characterized by the victims. Solo's half-sister Teresa Obert told ESPN neither she nor her son was contacted by U.S. Soccer in the wake of the incident.
“Nothing less than unpatriotic,“ Stevens told USA Today of the timing the OTL report. “Low class, low class. It was super intentional. I don't know what their issue is personally with Hope, but it definitely feels like they have one.”
Stevens also addressed comparisons of Solo to NFL running back Ray Rice and maintained his wife's innocence in the allegations against her.
“I think that what's hard is that she's the victim of something that was really scary and a really unfortunate incident,” he said. ”[She] being classified even remotely close to Ray Rice and these other domestic violence incidents is ridiculous and outright wrong.”
On Friday, U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati defended the Federation's investigation into Solo and decision to allow her to compete in the 2015 Women's World Cup. Gulati was responding to a letter from Connecticut senator Richard Blumenthal that called on the organization to “reconsider” Solo's position as a member of the team.
Solo did not speak to the media after the USWNT drew 0–0 with Sweden in group play on Friday night, according to USA Today.
“I think that right now, from my perspective, everybody is trying to dissect Hope, trying to figure out what makes her tick,” said Stevens. “Nobody likes to feel like a science experiment. She's just out there doing the best that she can, to be the best person that she can be. I'm just here to try and support her.”
- Molly Geary