The NFL Had The Ray Rice Video As Early As April

A law enforcement official is alleging that he gave NFL officials the elevator video of Ray Rice punching his girlfriend in April, and the league did nothing about it. Meanwhile, the league is insisting that they didn’t see the Ray Rice video until this week.

According to ESPN, the official proved confirmation to the Associated Press that the NFL had received the video by playing a voice mail. The message is from a telephone number associated with NFL headquarters, and in it, a female voice can be heard thanking the official and saying, “You’re right, it’s terrible.”

The official claimed that he has not heard from anyone in the NFL since then.

The NFL, meanwhile, is doubling down on its insistence that it had no knowledge of the video until it was released by TMZ earlier this week. Earlier today, according to USA Today, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sent a memo to team officials insisting that the league had asked for the Ray Rice video from law enforcement, but not from the casino where the video of Ray Rice beating his then-fiance took place.

“In the context of a criminal investigation, information obtained outside of law enforcement that has not been tested by prosecutors or by the court system is not necessarily a reliable basis for imposing league discipline.”

Unlike the TMZ video released earlier this week, the video sent by the law enforcement official contains audio. It has not been made public, as of this post (count on TMZ to leak it before the end of the week), but A.P. reports have provided some information about the audio.

Rice and Janay can be heard shouting obscenities at each other. After the altercation, when Rice is seen dragging Janay out of the elevator, he’s met by casino staff. One of the casino employees says, “She’s drunk, right?” and then the words “No cops” can be heard.

The fallout from the Ray Rice video continues to send shockwaves throughout the NFL. Initially, Ray Rice was only given a two-game suspension for the incident – a move which outraged many NFL fans, particularly in light of the NFL’s habit of handing out harsh punishment for “offenses” such as smoking marijuana. After the video surfaced, Rice was let go by his team, the Baltimore Ravens, and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced that Rice would be suspended indefinitely.

The incident is becoming something of a stain on the NFL Commissioner’s Office, and this new information is unlikely to help. According to this Inquisitr report, pressure is being placed on Goodell to resign over his handling of the Ray Rice incident.

Do you believe that Goodell should resign in light of this new information about the Ray Rice video? Let us know what you think in the comments.

[Image courtesy of: CBS Sports]