Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice apologized for his role in a domestic violence incident with his then-fiancee last year in a letter to Baltimore published by the Baltimore Sun on Friday.
In the statement, he also thanked owner Steve Bisciotti, general manager Ozzie Newsome and coach John Harbaugh.
The apology comes almost one year to the day when Rice was arrested in Atlantic City after an incident with his now-wife in a casino elevator.
The NFL suspended Rice for two games after he pleaded not guilty to third-degree charge of aggravated assault. He received no jail time after applying for a pretrial intervention program.
In September, TMZ published another video showing Rice striking Palmer inside the elevator, prompting outrage and calls for the NFL to increase Rice's punishment. Previously, the only public video of the incident was footage of Rice dragging Palmer out of the elevator. After the release of the elevator video, the Ravens terminated Rice's contract and the NFL suspended him indefinitely.
The full apology letter:
This is not a farewell or goodbye. The last seven years that my family and I have spent in Baltimore have by far been the best of our lives. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you all for the love and support you’ve shown my family and I throughout my football career. We’ll always be grateful for the love we’ve received from all of our fans and supporters, and for winning a Super Bowl. To all the kids who looked up to me, I’m truly sorry for letting you down, but I hope it’s helped you learn that one bad decision can turn your dream into a nightmare. There is no excuse for domestic violence, and I apologize for the horrible mistake I made. I hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me, and I hope to make a positive difference in people’s lives by raising awareness of this issue. Thank you, Baltimore Ravens, for all you have done for my family and I. I’m very grateful to Steve Bisciotti, Ozzie Newsome, John Harbaugh, and everyone at 1 Winning Drive. I love you all very much, and I’ll always be proud to say I played for the Baltimore Ravens.
-- Ray Rice
Rice, 27, appealed that suspension and was ultimately reinstated by the league. He has yet to sign with a team.
An investigation headed by former FBI director Robert S. Mueller III found no evidence that the NFL had seen the videotape before it was publicly released, but it also determined that the league did not do enough to obtain the tape from law enforcement.
- Scooby Axson