On the heels of the NFL's announcement that Dallas Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy's suspension has been reduced from 10 games to four, here's a timeline of the domestic abuse case that involved Hardy and the NFL's responses. Data are from ESPN Stats & Information:
April 22, 2015: Commissioner Roger Goodell suspends Hardy for the first 10 games of the 2015 regular season in a letter that warned another similar violation of the personal conduct policy could result in banishment from the league.
May 13, 2014: According to the testimony of Hardy's former girlfriend, 24-year-old Nicole Holder, Hardy on the night of May 13 flung her from a bed, threw her into a bathtub, then tossed her onto a futon covered with rifles. Holder said Hardy -- then playing for the Carolina Panthers -- ripped off a necklace he had given her, threw it into a toilet and slammed the lid on her arm when she tried to retrieve it. She said Hardy dragged her by the hair room to room, then put his hands around her throat. "He looked me in my eyes and he told me he was going to kill me," Holder said. She said Hardy then made a 911 call and lied when he said she had attacked him with a high heel and may have been high on cocaine. When authorities arrived, Hardy was arrested.
July 15, 2014: Hardy is convicted by a judge of assaulting Holder. Hardy says he never laid a hand on Holder. His attorney described Holder as an erratic young woman desperate to be back at Hardy's side and in the limelight. He said she was high on hours of drinking and buzzing on cocaine when she flew into a jealous rage after Hardy told her to leave the apartment. Immediately after the conviction, his attorneys announce that Hardy would exercise his right under North Carolina law to appeal the conviction.
Sept. 15, 2014: After playing for the Panthers in Week 1, Hardy is deactivated against the Detroit Lions.
Sept. 17, 2014: Hardy agrees to be placed on the commissioner's exempt list. He continues to draw his salary of $13.1 million.
Feb. 9, 2015: Charges against Hardy are dismissed after the accuser failed to show for court. In the dismissal form, the prosecutor stated: "For the past several months, the alleged victim, Nicole Holder, has made herself completely unavailable to the Mecklenburg District Attorney’s Office. The State further has reliable information that Ms. Holder has reached a civil settlement with the Defendant. ... [T]he State reviewed the interview of Ms. Holder on the day of the incident and compared her statement against the transcript of the trial conducted in District Court. ... In comparing the prior statement with Ms. Holder’s District Court testimony, the State concluded that, in her absence, it did not have sufficient legal basis upon which to introduce the initial statement she provided to law enforcement."
March 4, 2015: Hardy meets with league officials to make his case to come off the commissioner's exempt list and immediately be reinstated. In the meeting, Hardy turns over documents from his legal case.
March 10, 2015: Hardy becomes a free agent.
March 18, 2015: Hardy signs a one-year, $11.3 million contract with the Cowboys.
April 22, 2015: Hardy is suspended without pay for the first 10 games of the 2015 season in relation to the domestic abuse case.
May 28, 2015: Arbitrator Harold Henderson hears Hardy’s appeal.
July 10, 2015: NFL announces Hardy's suspension has been reduced by Henderson from 10 games to four.