Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Daily Cal: Ex-Girlfriend's Restraining Order Against Lynch Revoked

BY Keith Brown

An Alameda County judge Friday revoked a restraining order issued against former Cal football star Marshawn Lynch in January, saying that Lynch had not been sufficiently notified of court proceedings.   On Jan. 26 another Alameda County judge granted the restraining order to an ex-girlfriend of Lynch who alleged that Lynch committed battery and sexual assault against her in December.  Neither Lynch nor his attorney were present at this proceeding.  The woman’s filings for the restraining order said that Lynch had been personally served with notice of the restraining order court proceedings Jan. 15 on the UC Berkeley campus.

But Lynch’s attorney M. Gerald Schwartzbach said Lynch was in Arizona on that date.  “It was a lie,” Schwartzbach said. “Marshawn at the time was in the Scottsdale-Tempe area, and had been there since Jan. 7. The judge had been misled to believe that he had received notice when he had not.”  On Jan. 29 the Alameda County District Attorney’s office announced that it considered the criminal allegations too unsubstantiated to press charges.   Lynch’s ex-girlfriend proceeded to hire attorney John Burris, who said at the time that his client would likely file a civil suit.  Schwartzbach said yesterday that so far no civil case has been filed. Burris did not return calls for comment yesterday.

Schwartzbach has said the allegations likely came about because of Lynch’s rising celebrity status, especially considering his future financial prospects.  The announcement of the restraining order drew media attention and speculation on what impacts a criminal case might have on Lynch’s future football career.  Lynch was the 2006 Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year, and has declared for the upcoming NFL draft.  “We’re very relieved it’s over, and very happy with it getting lifted, but at the same time there never should have been a restraining order,” said Lynch’s agent, Doug Hendrickson. “Every team is aware of this, and every team knows that there were no charges filed. All this will have absolutely zero impact.”

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