Felony charges against former Atlanta Falcons linebacker Prince Shembo for killing his ex-girlfriend's Yorkshire terrier were dismissed last week after he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of cruelty to animals, Shembo's attorney Jerry Froelich told ESPN.com.
The end result was a $1,000 fine, according to Froelich, plus community service which is still being discussed. Shembo also has volunteered to make a donation to a charity related to animal safety.
"The government decided that the dog bit him and he kicked it, and he shouldn't have kicked it," Froelich said. "I feel like I could have won the case. [Shembo] just wanted to get it over with. He wanted to get on and move on with his NFL career. He's in the best shape of his life.
"I believe he was overcharged to begin with. The caseload I presented, it should have never been a felony. But I couldn't get a trial until January or February. Again, he wanted to move on with his life."
The incident occurred in mid-April, and Shembo was arrested and charged on May 29. The Falcons released him the same day.
Shembo, 23, was a fourth-round draft pick of the Falcons in 2014 out of Notre Dame. He started three games as a rookie last season and recorded 59 combined tackles.
Shembo still faces the possibility of discipline from the NFL if he is picked up by a team.
"We will review the court record, do any other follow-up that is necessary, and make a determination on potential discipline as appropriate," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said.