Former NFL player Travis Rudolph has been found not guilty of murder following four hours of jury deliberation on Wednesday, according to WPTV.
Travis Rudolph: “I Got My Freedom Back” Following Not Guilty Verdict In Murder Trial On Wednesday
The verdict comes after a two-week-long trial where he was accused of killing one man and attempting to kill three others in self-defense in a fatal shooting outside his Lake Park home two years ago.
“I got my freedom back, and I can get back to my life,” Rudolph said outside the Palm Beach County Courthouse after the verdict. “I was definitely nervous. We definitely prayed a lot.”
Rudolph faced one count of first-degree murder of Sebastien Jean-Jacques and three counts of attempted murder, the outlet reports. He’s been cleared of all counts as of Thursday.
The case stemmed from an April 7, 2021 incident, when four men showed up at the former Florida State University and NFL wide receiver’s home.
The men were there to confront him about an alleged domestic dispute with his now ex-girlfriend, Dominique Jones.
Shooting Took Place Between Rudolph’s Now-Ex Girlfriend’s Brothers After Alleged Domestic Dispute
The 27-year-old ultimately shot them with a semi-automatic rifle to defend himself, the outlet reports.
Jones had testified at trial that Rudolph physically abused her. The alleged abuse prompted her to send her brothers a text telling them to go “shoot up (Travis’) s***.”
Prosecutors, too, attempted to paint Rudolph as the aggressor in the situation, having brought a gun to a fistfight.
On the stand this week, Rudolph testified that he only pulled out his firearm after seeing two guns pointed at him, according to WPTV.
The jury ultimately sided with Rudolph.
“I really appreciate the jury. They made the right decision,” Rudolph said. “God bless them all, and I appreciate them for taking the time to actually listen to the truth come out.”
Former NFL Wide Receiver’s Brief Career Retrospective, Plans To Play For The Future
The former New York Giant has been out of jail and on house arrest since last year after unsuccessfully seeking a “stand your ground” defense, according to ESPN.
Rudolph had testified several times at trial that Jones was never his girlfriend. But during cross-examination, prosecutors argued that he was not only in a relationship with her but that he was also cheating and speaking to other women.
Rudolph caught eight passes for 101 yards during his rookie season with the Giants. However, he scored no touchdowns.
Rudolph was waived the next summer before catching on with the Miami Dolphins. A knee injury ultimately ended his NFL career.
In a video tweeted by Huffington Post’s Philip Lewis, Rudolph says he’s “definitely planning on getting back to football.” He added that he’s not out of his prime yet at the age of 27 either.
Travis Rudolph says he’s “definitely planning on getting back to football,” and says he’s not out of his prime yet: pic.twitter.com/8a14s77e4S
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) June 7, 2023