• Court date for Panthers' Hardy case questionable

    By: Jim Bradley


    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - As Carolina Panther Greg Hardy remains on indefinite leave from the team, attention is focusing on his scheduled trial date on domestic violence charges.

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    Hardy, who was found guilty by a judge of assault and making threats against his ex-girlfriend, is appealing and asking for a jury trial.

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    The NFL and the Panthers have indicated he won't be allowed to play for the team until his criminal case is resolved. Legal experts said his trial, tentatively scheduled for the week of Nov. 17, may not take place until much later.
    They point out that there are hundreds of domestic violence cases older than Hardy's.
    "Every single victim of domestic violence wants to have their case heard," said Charlotte defense attorney Brad Smith. "I've got cases that are years old that are still making their way up to the front of the line."
    The District Attorney's Office has sole control over deciding which cases will be placed on the court docket.
    From the backlog of cases, prosecutors will choose roughly 30 defendants to essentially be on stand-by for the November week when Hardy's case is scheduled.
    If Hardy even makes that list, he still faces long odds on getting his case before a jury.
    The DA's Office said because domestic cases rarely take less than a day they would likely only get to two or three cases during the week-long session.
    That could push Hardy's case into next year at the earliest.
    "If it's treated like any other case Greg Hardy could be sitting around this time next year still waiting on his date in court," Smith said. Hardy's attorney Chris Fialko declined to comment on when Hardy's case may go before a jury.
    The District Attorney's Office said deciding which cases are placed on the docket is complicated but insists that the notoriety of Hardy's case won't be a factor.
    A list of cases scheduled for the week of Nov. 17 is expected to be made public early in October.

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