Late Tuesday, the city attorney of Columbus, Ohio, announced that he would not be filing charges against Dallas Cowboys rookie Ezekiel Elliott for domestic assault. In July, Elliott's ex-girlfriend, Tiffany Thompson, accused him of attacking her in a car, but police didn't make an arrest. The city reviewed the evidence and on Wednesday, Columbus City Attorney Richard Pfeiffer released all of what his office called the "conflicting evidence" in the case. The entire document dump is included below, but here are seven bits worth noting.
1. Thompson encouraged a witness to lie to police. — In a text message, Thompson tells Ayrin Nelson to tell police that Elliott grabbed her by the wrist and pulled her from her car. Nelson asks Thompson if Thompson wants her to lie to the police and Thompson says yes. In an interview with police, Nelson says nothing about Elliott pulling Thompson from a car.
2. Elliott's potential drug issues may go deeper than that stop at a Seattle dispensary. — During the Cowboys' trip to Seattle during week two of the preseason, Elliott was spotted by TMZ cameras examining the wares at a Seattle marijuana dispensary. In a text message conversation between Thompson and Elliott released Wednesday, Thompson tells Elliott that he needs to "do everything he possibly can to pass a drug test." Elliott replies "I'm gonna pass. About to live in this sauna for the next 24 hours."
3. Witnesses back up Elliott's claims about Thompson's bruises. — According to statements from multiple witnesses, Thompson probably picked up the bruises she showed and had photographed by Columbus police during a fight at a club. When witnesses saw Thompson earlier in the week, they told police, she had no visible bruises.
4. Nelson heard Thompson say she was going to "ruin Elliott's life." — After the fight, Nelson says she went with Thompson to the after party for Elliott's birthday celebration. When they arrived at Elliott's rented apartment, Nelson says, Thompson began screaming at a woman in the driver's seat of a car carrying Elliott. Elliott and the woman went inside the apartment, Nelson says, without coming anywhere near Thompson, who screamed at Elliott that she was going to ruin his life by calling the police.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the Observer's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Dallas's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
5. Elliott was probably involved with Thompson, even if he says otherwise. — In a written statement to Columbus PD, Elliott claims that Thompson was never his girlfriend. In text messages between Elliott and Thompson, he tells her that "this whole shit made me realize I can't be done with u. Like you are the only person I really feel comfortable talking to about anything. Like how do I push u out of my life when you are the first one I come to when I have a problem." Later, he accuses Thompson of trying to ruin his July 22 birthday by not showing up for the celebration. "U don't love me," Elliott says.
6. Elliott's a daddy's boy. — In the aftermath of Thompson's complaint, it was Stacy Elliott, Ezekiel's dad, who released the only official word from the family about the incident. On the night Thompson called police, Stacy Elliott was out with his son and his son's friends at the late-night birthday celebration, and was set to show up at the after party when Thompson crashed it. Thompson never lived with Elliott, Stacy says, and he can prove it. He moved with his son to Columbus when Ezekiel Elliott started playing at Ohio State, just to help him handle all the responsibilities that come with playing big-time college football. As such, Stacy Elliott says, he knows where his son lived, and who lived with him.
7. Even if he didn't live with Thompson, Elliott did help pay for her apartment. — Both Stacy and Ezekiel Elliott confirm that Ezekiel Elliott helped pay for Thompson's apartment.