GLENDALE, Ariz. — Arizona Cardinals officials say they were aware of criminal charges against coach James Saxon months before the team decided to place him on paid administrative leave Thursday.
On Friday, head coach Kliff Kingsbury said the team knew he had been charged with two counts of domestic battery stemming from an incident in Indianapolis in May.
Saxon continued to coach the team and was seen on the field during training camp, which opened on July 26. He was not with the team Friday.
The team released a statement after placing Saxon on administrative leave while the matter is under review by the NFL. Here is the statement in full:
“We are aware of the incident and notified the NFL as required. The matter is currently under review pursuant to league policies. After consultation with the league office, James has been placed on paid administrative leave. We will have no further comment pending additional proceedings.”
Charges were filed against Saxon on May 25 and Kingsbury said the team knew about the charges at the time they were filed.
One of his charges includes a Level 6 felony for allegedly assaulting a woman in front of a child younger than 16 years old, according to court documents.
The woman (identified as E.S in court documents) told police she and Saxon had been arguing the night of May 6. A verbal argument occurred the next day at a Costco in Indianapolis.
On their way home, Saxon allegedly "began driving erratically by accelerating quickly and then applying the brakes repeatedly," court documents said.
According to court documents, the woman told police Saxon attempted to leave with their son after they returned home. Saxon allegedly pushed her multiple times including one that "caused her to fall back into the garage door."
At one point, the woman said Saxon told her "You want your son? You're going to have to kill me! You better believe it! I'll fight you," court documents said.
Saxon is in a holding pattern until Aug. 25, when an attorney's conference is scheduled in court.
This week has been filled with off-the-field issues for the team.
On Wednesday, Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Marquise “Hollywood” Brown was arrested at 7 a.m. on State Route 101 after troopers say he was driving more than 125 mph.
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