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July 30, 2009

Goodman off the legal hook and reinstated

Florida State Wide Receiver Richard Goodman is off the legal hook as of Thursday afternoon.

Goodman's attorney Sam Lopez says Goodman and his family couldn't be more relieved about the news that charges against him have been dropped.

State Attorney Jon Fuchs says the investigation into the November 12th FSU union brawl, showed that many people, mainly Phi Beta Sigma fraternity members and Florida State football players, threw chairs, making it difficult to prove in court that Goodman was the one who struck the female bystander.

The State attorney's office say there were too many holes in the accounts of what happened that day when the melee broke out and say the witnesses statements were unreliable.

"We would not be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury regarding the offense against Mr. Goodman. As a result, we have an ethical obligation not to proceed on cases such as this," said Jon Fuchs, State Prosecutor.

Prior to Thursday, Goodman was under an indefinite suspension per the athletic department's policy following his May 26, 2009 arrest, which was based solely on the identification of one witness. With the charges dropped, head coach Bobby Bowden issued a statement saying that Goodman would be "reinstated to the team immediately."

"My heart does go out to the victim. Ms. Rawls may not get the justice she deserves, but I know Richard Goodman today got the justice he deserved," said Lopez.

At this point, state prosecutors say unless new details come to light, no charges will be filed in relation to the incident.

Lopez says Goodman has been able to work out with the team since the union fight, but notes he was excluded from many of the drills.

Goodman's attorney also said the investigation by the Attorney General's office came down to the wire... because FSU football camp starts this Saturday. Up until Thursday, the senior wideout wasn't able to sign up for fall classes, which is what made the outcome crucial.

At this time, Goodman's athletic scholarship has been reinstated and he will be back on the field for the upcoming season. He will report to preseason camp on Friday, August 6th along with the rest of the team. The first practice is scheduled for August 7th.



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