Documents reveal details of Hope Solo’s arrest ahead of World Cup opener

U.S. women's soccer team goalkeeper Hope Solo appears in Kirkland Municipal Court on Monday, June 23, 2014.
U.S. women's soccer team goalkeeper Hope Solo appears in Kirkland Municipal Court on Monday, June 23, 2014. (AP Photo/Pool, The Seattle Times, Mike Siegel, Pool)

KIRKLAND, Wash. – U.S. women’s goalkeeper Hope Solo was combative with officers after her arrest last year on accusations that she assaulted her half-sister and her teenage nephew, an incident where authorities described Solo as the “primary aggressor,” according to an ESPN report Sunday.

Solo initially faced two misdemeanour counts of domestic violence in the altercation at her half-sister’s house last June, though those charges were dismissed on procedural grounds earlier this year. Solo, who had pleaded not guilty, portrayed herself as a victim in interviews after the dismissal of the case.

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The network said the report was based on police records, two sworn depositions obtained by Outside the Lines, other documents and interviews with one of Solo’s alleged victims. It says Solo had been drinking when she arrived at the home of her half-sister, Teresa Obert, and was the aggressor in the altercation, including slamming the teenager’s head into the floor.

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The report also says that Solo was so combative after her arrest that she had to be forced to the ground by police and that she insulted officers.

According to the report, Solo suggested that two jailers were having sex and called another officer a “14-year-old boy.” When asked to remove a necklace, Solo told the officer that the piece of jewelry was worth more than he made in a year, the ESPN report said.

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Solo’s lawyer, in response to a question from ESPN about the reports, responded with a statement saying: “Police reports and other court documents clearly demonstrate that the alleged victims radically changed their stories on multiple occasions and twice refused to answer questions under oath, despite court orders. Had the case proceeded to trial and the witnesses been cross-examined under oath subject to the penalty of perjury, the defence would have proven that Teresa’s son, not Hope, was the true aggressor, and that Hope suffered a concussion as a result of her nephew’s unlawful conduct.”

Representatives for Solo pointed to the statement from the attorney.

The U.S. women’s team and its star goalkeeper are scheduled to begin play in the World Cup on Monday night with a match against Australia in Winnipeg, Manitoba. At a news conference Sunday in advance of the match, coach Jill Ellis was asked about the report.

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“Hope’s been fantastic. That was a long time ago. I’ll be honest, we’ve moved on,” Ellis said. “She’s been a fantastic player and teammate. None of that has even resonated with us, and I’m sure many of the player aren’t aware of it.”

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Ellis said she has no plans to address the team about it.

“I know our team. We have each other’s backs. I’ll be honest, it something that was a long time ago. We’ve certainly put it to bed and our focus is tomorrow evening,” Ellis said.

Solo was not made available to reporters, but she was at practice, laughing and joking with her teammates while warming up before heading off to work in goal. She is widely considered one of the best goalkeepers in the world.

Midfielder Carli Lloyd is Solo’s roommate in Winnipeg.

“Honestly, didn’t discuss it with her for one second,” Lloyd said.

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