Bengals running back Cedric Benson is forced to spend 20 days in jail, starting on October 17 (the bye week) along with $4,000 in fines after pleading no contest to first degree assault Monday afternoon at the Travis County Courthouse. The charge is the result of his first assault in Texas in May 2010. Benson was excused from practices this week to attend the trial.
UPDATE from Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer:
Assistant Travis County Prosecuting Attorney Corby Holcomb told The Austin American-Statesman that with credit for good behavior, Benson would serve about a week in jail. If the normal schedule applies, Benson would only miss one or two practices and should be back in Cincinnati by Oct. 26, which would be the first major practice in preparation for the Oct. 30 game at Seattle.
The running back was largely supported by the team with Marvin Lewis suggesting that Benson was sucker punched. Other accounts range from Benson being belligerent when asked to leave a Texas bar to simply defending himself against what he perceived as hostile intension from a fellow patron. Whatever happened that night must have been minor enough for the suspension-happy NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell from disciplining Benson.
Benson now has one more assault charge to answer for, with a hearing scheduled for this week.
Our only solution is this. Restrict Benson from passing the 37th parallel. That way the entire state of Texas will be off-limits and he'll never be arrested again.