Zac’s note: This piece was first published on my Examiner page
Plaxico Burress has been indicted on criminal gun charges. Antonio Pierce has not.
According to the Star-Ledger, ESPN and various other sources, New York Giants linebacker Antonio Pierce avoided an indictment from a Manhattan grand jury regarding the November incident that left then Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. This news comes just six days after reports broke that Michael Bachner, attorney for Pierce, stated that “the DA’s office has confirmed that they are going to seek charges against Antonio.”
The Star-Ledger quotes an email from Bachner that was sent moments after he learned that Pierce would not be indicted. Bachner said “Antonio is gratified that the grand jury determined that the evidence did not support an indictment. Once the grand jurors were able to hear Antonio, see him and understand the workings of his mind on that extraordinary evening, they concluded, as they should have, that the acted as any reasonable person would have.”
Even more good news for Giants fans. Greg Aiello, NFL spokesman, told the Star-Ledger that Pierce will not be suspended by the NFL.
Here are some quotes from the Giants front office regarding the grand jury’s decision to not indict Antonio Pierce. Each of the quotes comes from the Star-Ledger.
Giants team chairman Steve Tisch – “Needless to say, we are happy with the decision announced today by the Manhattan district attorney’s office.”
Giants GM Jerry Reese – “Antonio is a leader on this team, but he is still human, and this has been an emotionally draining experience for him. We know he was happy to get to training camp yesterday, and with this behind him, he can focus all his energy and efforts on football.”
Giants team president John Mara – “We certainly agree with the grand jury’s decision. We said last week we felt strongly that Antonio’s actions did not warrant criminal charges, and obviously the grand jury, having heard all of the testimony, felt the same way.”
Giants head coach Tom Coughlin, courtesy of ESPN – “As I said yesterday, we are anxious to start the new season, nobody more than Antonio. Today’s decision allows him and this team to move forward and focus on our preparation for the season.”
New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin said it best. Pierce avoiding an indictment allows the Giants to focus on the 2009 NFL regular season. The Plaxico Burress saga, as it impacts the Giants as a team, has officially come to an end. Hakeem Nicks and Ramses Barden are just two steps in the right direction toward healing an offense that was brutally damaged by the selfish, ignorant actions of Plaxico Burress. Antonio Pierce, meanwhile, will be grateful to resume life as normal and Giants fans can look forward to thinking and talking about football.
Not all of my Giants article are published on AC so for more information on the Pierce/Burress situation, please check out these pieces:
Breaking News: Plaxico Burress Indicted
Giants Staff, Former Players Testify in Burress Case
The Plaxico Burress Saga