Jul 7, 2010, 11:53 AM EST
Sorry, haters, but it appears Michael Vick will walk away from this messy story with no criminal charges, and thus probably not face sanctions by the league or an outright release from the Philadelphia Eagles. Virginia Beach police have shut the door on the June 25th shooting, saying they have in fact identified the shooter (not Vick), but a lack of cooperation by the shootee and a failure of any witnesses to step forward will prevent them from pursuing any charges.
The news is obviously very good for Vick, who besides being questioned by police, has also spoken to feds in a related probe to check whether he violated the terms of his probation, and still faces internal inquiries by the Eagles and the NFL. The fact is though, nobody has been able to nail him down on anything specifically wrong at this point, and with the investigation coming to its conclusion, it's unlikely any new information is coming out that will cause him further trouble.
He's not completely in the clear yet either. It's possible Vick's probation officer could still find him on the wrong side of the law. Part of his probation states he's not to associate with known felons, and while that did not appear to be his plan at the party, intent doesn't change the fact that he was involved in an altercation with the "victim," a criminal and former associate of Vick's.
Vick may still have to deal with Roger Goodell, and perhaps Eagles management as well. The NFL has been tossing out suspensions like candy in recent years. While the league is likely inclined to give Vick another chance in this case, Goodell has a bit of an itchy trigger finger when it comes to handing out games. The Eagles have also adamantly denied they're prepared to part ways with their backup quarterback, but admitted they were still gathering information. A release seems highly unlikely now, though not totally improbable.
One point of note that remains is the fact that Vick handled himself incredibly well through this ordeal. He's apparently been forthright in the investigation, and has been measured in his responses to media regarding his alleged involvement. Fox 29 caught up with Vick recently, and he even admitted, "There should of never been a party." That doesn't take back the fact that there was one, but it's a little refreshing to hear any professional athlete, much less Vick, accept that he made a mistake. Or at least he said it anyway.
So there you have it. I don't care what anybody says, as a football player, I want Vick as my backup quarterback and am happy to hear he has no known further involvement in this scandal. Although more importantly, I also hope that is actually the truth.
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