49ers cut Ray McDonald amid sexual assault allegation
Santa Clara, Calif. — Defensive lineman Ray McDonald was released Wednesday by the San Francisco 49ers amid an investigation by San Jose police into McDonald on suspicion of sexual assault.
San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke said he informed McDonald and his agent by phone at 11:30 a.m. PST that the defender is "terminated"
"This is a situation that we can all learn from," he said.
Baalke said CEO Jed York and coach Jim Harbaugh also were involved in the decision.
"We expect a lot from our players, hold them accountable for their actions," Baalke said.
Baalke said the 49ers notified the NFL office of the allegations against McDonald, saying, "This is a team decision."
San Jose police said Wednesday that they are investigating McDonald on suspicion of sexual assault.
Sgt. Heather Randol said detectives searched McDonald's San Jose home.
Randol said an area hospital notified police late Tuesday night that a woman was seeking treatment.
"The victim alleged she was possibly sexually assaulted a day prior," Randol said. "Based on preliminary investigation, detectives secured a search warrant and served it at the alleged suspect's residence in San Jose."
Randol didn't immediately respond to follow up questions seeking to clarify the reference to the alleged victim saying she was "possibly sexually assaulted."
No arrests have been made or charges filed.
McDonald's mother, Labrina McDonald, told the San Jose Mercury News the allegation was "laughable" and not true.
She said her son warned her not to talk to the media, but she told the paper that "there's no truth to that stuff."
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the league is "looking into" the case.
This is the second time in recent months that McDonald has been the subject of a police investigation.
Last month, the Santa Clara County district attorney's office announced that it declined to file charges against the defensive lineman in a domestic violence investigation stemming from his Aug. 31 arrest.
Prosecutors cited conflicting versions of what happened, a lack of verifiable eyewitnesses and a lack of cooperation by the alleged victim, McDonald's fiancee.
"This is about a pattern of poor decision making," Baalke said. Harbaugh notified the players.