Domestic assault charges against U.S. women’s soccer star Hope Solo were dismissed by a judge in Washington state on Tuesday, her attorney said.
“Today’s decision brings closure to what has been one of the most difficult and emotionally draining times of my life,” Solo said on Facebook. “I always had faith that once the facts of the case were presented, I would be cleared of all charges, and I am so happy and relieved to finally have it all behind me.”
KOMO reported that attorney Todd Maybrown successfully argued in court that he couldn’t depose witnesses for the prosecution because they refused to be questioned despite a court order.
Solo, who holds the national team record for most shutouts, didn’t appear in court. She was in Carson, California, at the squad’s training camp in preparation for the upcoming World Cup.
She had faced two counts of fourth-degree domestic violence assault.
“We are gratified that, after considering all of the facts and circumstances of this case, the judge has dismissed all charges,” Maybrown said in a written statement. “With a careful review of the facts surrounding these matters, it is clear that Hope never should have faced charges in the first place.”
Police accounts of incident
Police had said Solo, 33, assaulted two relatives in June at a home in the Seattle area. Officers responded to a 911 call in which a man reported that a woman would not stop “hitting people” or leave the house, a police statement said.
At the home, officers heard a disturbance. Inside, Solo appeared “intoxicated and upset,” according to police.
Police said Solo’s nephew and sister had visible injuries. After interviewing witnesses, police believed that Solo was the “primary aggressor and had instigated the assault,” the statement said.
Solo, a two-time Olympic gold-medal winner, said in a letter to fans a few days later that she was “confident in the legal process and believe my name will be cleared.”
Her attorney denied that Solo had committed any crime, saying she was assaulted and injured in the incident.
“I love my family dearly,” Solo wrote. “We, like all families, have our challenges, but my sincere hope is that we are able to resolve this situation as a family. Adversity has always made us stronger, and I know this situation will be no different.”
The U.S. women’s next match is February 8 in France. The World Cup, hosted by Canada, begins in June.
She also plays for the Seattle Reign of the National Women’s Soccer League, which begins its season in April.
No stranger to controversy
Solo also played on World Cup teams in 2007 and 2011, and appeared on ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.”
In 2012, Solo sent out a harsh tweet criticizing Olympic soccer commentator Brandi Chastain for her negative commentary during the 2012 London games.
During the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup, Solo openly criticized U.S. women’s soccer coach Greg Ryan after she was benched and the U.S. lost its next match by four goals.
In an interview two years ago, Solo spoke about her public image.
“I have a bad rap,” she said. “People look at me as selfish, outspoken. But I know who I am.”
The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency in 2012 publicly warned Solo after she tested positive for a banned diuretic — a substance she claimed she didn’t know was in premenstrual medication prescribed by her physician. The agency accepted Solo’s explanation, and she competed in the 2012 Olympics.
“I don’t expect any of the media to be positive,” Solo said 2012. “But I know that I’m doing wonderful things for the sport of soccer, and I know I’m doing amazing things for female athletes. So I can take it.”
Solo was eliminated from “Dancing With the Stars” in 2011 following a run on the show marred by frequent disputes with pro partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy and the judging panel.