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Atlanta Braves’ Marcell Ozuna agrees to pretrial diversion program that could lead to dismissal of domestic violence case


Atlanta Braves outfielder Marcell Ozuna has agreed to enter a diversion program that could result in his domestic violence case being dismissed.

Ozuna agreed to the pretrial resolution Thursday, more than three months after being arrested on assault charges for allegedly assaulting his wife. He faces misdemeanor charges of family violence battery and simple assault, but Fulton County deputy district attorney Simone Hylton announced Thursday that those charges will be dropped if Ozuna meets the resolution’s conditions within six months.

Ozuna was placed on six months’ supervision and must undergo a 24-week family violence intervention program, which includes an anger management course and a psychological assessment component, according to Hylton. He also must complete 200 hours of community service, refrain from illegal drug use and avoid any contact with his wife.

Hylton also said the six-month supervision would be terminated after three months if Ozuna completes all of the requirements early.

“Hopefully once it’s completed, I won’t see you again,” Fulton County Magistrate Judge Brandy Brooks told Ozuna over a Zoom call, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Ozuna’s next court appearance is scheduled for Jan. 13. His attorney, Michael LaScala, told the Journal-Constitution that the pretrial diversion program is a “fair resolution for both the state and my client.”

Ozuna, 30, was arrested May 29 after police officers in the Atlanta suburb of Sandy Springs said they witnessed him attacking his wife, Genesis, while the officers were responding to a 911 call. The original charges included felony aggravated assault by strangulation, but prosecutors dropped the felony charge in July.

LaScala said Thursday that Ozuna should never have been charged with a felony and told the Journal-Constitution that the outfielder is “looking forward to putting this behind him.”

Ozuna could still face a long suspension by Major League Baseball, which is reviewing his case under the joint domestic violence policy in place between MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association. He re-signed with Atlanta after a stellar first season with the Braves in 2020, agreeing to a four-year, $65 million deal.

Ozuna has not played since his fingers got injured in a game against Boston on May 25, four days before his arrest. He has been on the 10-day injured list since May 28.

Source link: https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/32177143/atlanta-braves-marcell-ozuna-agrees-pretrial-diversion-program-lead-dismissal-domestic-violence-case
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