Outcry over NFL's lenient punishment for domestic violence

A player's recent admission of spousal abuse has raised questions.

TAMPA, Fla. -- During the Super Bowl a PSA on domestic violence aired.

It was just one of the steps the NFL took after the video of football player Ray Rice went viral of him hitting his wife in an elevator. They also changed their conduct policy, hired three domestic violence experts and each team took part in domestic violence sessions.

“What’s been good is we’ve touched every single player at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and in the first year, every member in the organization,” says Mindy Murphy, with The Spring of Tampa Bay.

Mindy Murphy with the Spring of Tampa Bay, an organization to prevent domestic violence, says the NFL seemed to be making a step in the right direction. They help with the Tampa Bay Bucs domestic violence sessions.

“We were quite impressed with what young men have had to say,” says Murphy.

But the recent news of New York giants kicker Josh Brown, she says, is a step back. Brown was arrested for domestic violence in 2015. There are also documents that show he admitted to physically and mentally abusing his wife. Brown was given a one game suspension.

RELATED STORY: Giants' Brown in journal: 'I have abused my wife'

“These are criminal actions. He was physically assaulting her and there’s enough to hold him accountable,” says Murphy.

She says this is when action speaks louder than words.

“The NFL needs to stand up. The community needs to stand up. Men need to stand up. When victim comes forward, 99% of time she’s telling the truth and we function that she’s lying. So we need to believe when the victim comes forward,” says Murphy.

The commercials are nice, but it’s time for the NFL and teams to start making moves that echo their message.

“We hold the NFL accountable in one way. Society does not hold batterers accountable,” says Murphy.

The NFL released a statement about Brown's history. The league says in light of the new documents, it's going to determine next steps in the context of its personal conduct policy.


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