June 1: Michael Seiden of WSB-TV Channel 2 News in Atlanta obtained an arrest affidavit, providing additional details on the highly troubling incident. Of note, the court filings indicate that “the strangulation was witnessed by an officer” upon arrival at the scene.
Ozuna has been released on a $20,000 bond for the time being and is under court order to avoid contact with his wife, according to the Associated Press. The couple was in the process of divorcing at the time of Ozuna’s arrest, per the AP. Ken Rosenthal and David O’Brien of The Athletic lay out the reasons that it’s unlikely the Braves will be able to simply void Ozuna’s contract.
May 29, 8:52pm: The Braves released a statement: “We learned of Marcell Ozuna’s arrest earlier this evening and immediately informed the Commissioner’s Office. The Braves fully support Major League Baseball’s policy on domestic violence which stresses to the fullest that our society cannot and will not tolerate domestic violence in any form. Until the investigation is completed, we will have no further comment and all inquiries into the matter should be referred to the Office of the Commissioner.”
8:27pm: Marcell Ozuna was arrested today in Sandy Springs, Georgia on charges of aggravated assault strangulation and misdemeanor battery – family violence, according to WSB-TV’s Miles Garrett and ESPN.com’s Jeff Passan (Twitter links). Passan provides a transcript of the police report detailing the allegations (on Twitter). Ozuna is expected to be investigated by the league under the provisions of the MLB/MLBPA’s joint domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse policy.
Under the provisions of the joint policy, the league has the authority to issue discipline regardless of the outcome of the criminal charges leveled against Ozuna, though Ozuna could challenge any discipline to an arbitration panel. Since the policy was instituted in 2015, suspensions have ranged from anywhere from 15 games to a full season, as per the discretion of the Commissioner’s Office.
Ozuna was placed on the 10-day injured list yesterday due to two dislocated fingers on his left hand, and he was expected to miss at least six weeks. Should Ozuna be suspended, he would forfeit any salary owed to him during the missed games. Ozuna re-signed with the Braves on a four-year, $65MM deal this past offseason, and he has roughly $8.12MM remaining on his $12MM salary for the 2021 season.