Bill Montgomery defends choice to offer plea to Dwyer

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery defended a plea deal reached with former NFL Player Jonathan Dwyer.

Last week Dwyer pleaded guilty to a much lesser charge of disorderly conduct. Many have questioned if Dwyer got special treatment.

Montgomery showed us a picture of Dwyer's ex-wife's face and her injuries to help explain why he agreed to a plea deal. He wouldn't let us take video of the photo, but it does show a little bit of redness but no bruising. He says it would have been tough to prove if they'd gone to trial.

Arizona Cardinals player Jonathan Dwyer is on 18-months probation after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors. Eight counts against Dwyer including felony aggravated assault were dropped. In the deal, Dwyer pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct.

"There is no one in this country who is above the law, no one in this country who is below the law," said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery.

Montgomery denies Dwyer was given special treatment because of his NFL career. 

"It doesn't make a difference what someone's last name is, how much money they make, or whose jersey they wear," he said.

Montgomery said evidence in the case wasn't very strong. One of the main reasons is Dwyer's wife waited weeks to report the alleged attack, and then told officers and prosecutors she didn't want Dwyer to be punished. 

Montgomery said Dwyer's wife also waited days to take photos of her alleged injuries.

"A picture of the nose that didn't show any bruising, mild redness, a little bit of swelling, the examination of her nose by a doctor didn't notice any bruising," said Montgomery.

An x-ray showed a mild fracture at the tip of the nose, but Montgomery said defense attorneys would have argued there is no telling when that nasal fracture could have happened. Police also had photos of a hole Dwyer allegedly punched through the wall, along with a picture of a knife Dwyer allegedly texted to his wife saying he wanted his life to be over. 

Still Montgomery says that doesn't prove his case beyond a reasonable doubt.

Dwyer's disorderly conduct conviction is a domestic violence offense. Montgomery says he will be on probation for 18 months and have to attend anger management courses.

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