San Francisco 49ers' Ray McDonald arraignment postponed

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ByVic Lee KGO logo
Saturday, September 13, 2014
49ers' Ray McDonald arraignment postponed
Officials continue their investigation into whether or not San Francisco 49ers defensive end Ray Mcdonald abused his fiancee.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- San Jose police still have not finished investigating whether San Francisco 49ers defensive end Ray McDonald abused his fiancee. The arraignment was expected on Monday, but that has been postponed.

McDonald is playing Sunday at the Niners home opener. He'll play knowing that a possible domestic violence charge is hanging over his helmet.

It's been two weeks since McDonald was arrested at his birthday party at home and police have yet to finish their probe.

A 911 call said he was abusing his pregnant fiancee. Attorneys ABC7 News spoke with say they're taking their time, making sure they've looked at everything and talked to all the witnesses.

There may be a good reason for the delay. Officials are investigating the Ray Rice case, the ex-Baltimore Ravens star who is in the national spotlight because of his own domestic violence problems.

"That case was botched by the police and the district attorney. I think police and the D.A. here in Santa Clara County are being extra careful not to make the same mistake," Defense Attorney Steven Clark said.

There may be another reason. Victims often refuse afterwards to testify against their abusers. In this case, the reported victim was McDonald's fiancee.

"It would be very rare in a domestic violence case where the complaining witness or victim does not testify. That would be a very hard case to prosecute," Defense Attorney Ken Mandel said.

Dispatcher: "There's a new RP. Her fiancee was hitting her, they're at this address. He was trying to pull her out of the house."

Even incriminating audio from 911 or a police dispatch call may not be enough.

"Using a dispatchers report is typically considered hearsay, so he can't use that and I'm not sure about the witnesses," domestic violence victims advocate Kathleen Kreneck said.

ABC7 News was told it may be a couple of weeks before the investigation is done and the D.A. decides if he'll prosecute.

You can bet investigators will conduct a detailed investigation. And because of the spotlight, they'll take all the time they need.