Rhonda Cook and Bill Rankin of the ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION report Monday morning that Ben Roethlisberger has hired the same Atlanta attorney who got Ray Lewis off on murder charges in the ATL in 2000.
Veteran Atlanta defense lawyer Ed Garland confirmed Monday that he is representing Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger on allegations that he sexually assaulted a Georgia College & State University student.
Garland told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution he has talked to Roethlisberger and already interviewed some witnesses. Garland said he would have no further comment.
In 2000, Garland represented Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, who was charged with murder in a Buckhead street fight after a night of post-Super Bowl celebrating. In mid-trial, on June 5, 2000, Fulton County prosecutors dropped the murder charges against Lewis, allowing him to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge.
Lewis isn’t the only celebrity NFL player Garland has repped.
Four years later, Garland represented another Baltimore Raven, Atlanta native Jamal Lewis, who was facing federal drug charges. Jamal Lewis pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of using a cellphone to facilitate a drug transaction and was sentenced to a minimum-security prison for four months after the 2004 NFL season was over.
The charge is serious, so Roethlisberger is taking appropriate action with this hire. I wouldn’t read into it anything more than that.