Just before 2 p.m. today, the conference room in state senator Royce West's law office looked like a game of journalist Tetris, as some two dozen reporters and ten news cameras crammed around a long table to hear what Dez Bryant had to say about his recent arrest for allegedly attacking his mother, Angela. He's accused of slapping her with his hat, pulling her hair, pushing her in the chest, and striking her on the hands, wrists and arms. She also told police he'd grabbed and ripped her shirt and bra and tried to hit her with a ball. But earlier today, WFAA reported that Angela does not want to pursue the case against her son and has signed an "affidavit of non-prosecution" according to the Dallas County district attorney's spokesperson.
As it turned out, Bryant had nothing at all to say. Nor did his mother. The two filed into the room and sat silently next to West as he read from a prepared statement (which we've reprinted in full below). A staffer had previously warned us that there would be "no questions."
"Although Dez would like to speak to this matter, on the advice of counsel, he will not make any statements at this time," West read. "Did a family disagreement occur? Yes. Did Dez Bryant commit family violence against his mother? No."
West added that the family understands "the serious nature of family violence," and believes that "when all the facts are reviewed" Dez will be cleared of any allegations. As West spoke, Dez looked steadily at him. Angela kept her eyes down, nodding slightly, poker-faced.
"They ask that there not be a rush to judgment concerning their family," West read. "Let me say that again: that there not be a rush to judgment concerning their family. Thank you very much."
West and the Bryants stood up and shuffled back through the crowd of reporters towards the door. It had been six minutes.
"Any word from the Cowboys on this, Dez?" somebody asked. Bryant mumbled that he'd like to comment, but couldn't. With that, the three were gone, and the room erupted in a current of chuckles and a few snorts.
"Anything else we want to address?" somebody else asked, possibly sarcastically, as he looked around at the fast-emptying room.
A few moments ago, Dez sent this important tweet concerning the matter:
I'm about to go pick up this red velvet cake
— Dez Bryant (@DezBryant) July 24, 2012
Full Statement from Royce West On Behalf Of Dez and Angela Bryant:
Mr. Bryant and his mother, Angela, are appearing here today because they feel it is important to address recent report that Mr. Bryant committed family violence against his mother. Although Dez would like to speak to this matter, on the advice of counsel, he will not make any statements at this time.
Did a family disagreement occur? Yes. Did Dez Bryant commit family violence against his mother? No.
They are here together today to show they do love and support each other, just as much as they did before the incident a week ago. But like all families, the Bryants have disagreements.
Mr. Bryant and his family understand the serious nature of family violence. They believe that when all the facts are reviewed, Mr. Bryant will be cleared of any allegations of family violence.
Angela Bryant does not want charges filed against her son. Ms. Bryant has had an opportunity to speak with other people who witnessed the incident and has filed an Affidavit of Non Prosecution with the DeSoto Police Department. She recognizes that under the law, filing of the affidavit may not impact the legal outcome of her complaint. She asks that her affidavit be taken into consideration in deciding whether it is in the best interest of her family for this to continue in the legal system or allow them to resolve this issue as a family.
Dez and his mother believe this a family matter that can be worked out through counseling.
They ask that there not be a rush to judgment concerning their family. They also ask for your continued prayers and support for their family as they work through this matter.