Marshall's pattern with women, violence beyond troubling

by | CBSSports.com National Columnist
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Brandon Marshall may have done nothing wrong. He may be a victim. He was, after all, stabbed and hospitalized.

But there's a pattern with Marshall and there also is a piece of information about this strange case –- one of many in the strange and sometimes allegedly violent life of this talented receiver -- that might help to explain what happened in this latest incident involving Marshall, allegations of violence and a woman.

Brandon Marshall came to the Dolphins in 2010 after wearing out his welcome in Denver. (AP)  
Brandon Marshall came to the Dolphins in 2010 after wearing out his welcome in Denver. (AP)  
In 2007, three years before police say Marshall's wife, Michi Nogami-Marshall, stabbed Marshall in what she claims was self-defense, he was involved in another domestic violence case. Marshall was arrested for domestic violence against then-girlfriend Rasheeda Watley. Those charges were later dropped, but Brandon Marshall was ordered to complete anger management classes. One year later he was accused of battery by Watley. Marshall was acquitted.

Watley later filed a civil suit against Marshall. CBSSports.com has learned that a motion by Marshall to dismiss the suit was denied late last week, according to Watley. Marshall was ordered to give depositions in the case possibly as early as next week, Watley said.

So in only a matter of hours after a court decision harmful to Marshall and a few days before he was to possibly give a deposition, both according to Watley, the star Miami wide receiver is involved in a domestic dispute.

While this latest incident -- recounted in a Broward County (Fla.) Sheriff's Office report -- might not be Marshall's fault, his name continues to surface in matters of violence and women. They are reaching a point where we have to wonder if Marshall is a victim of bad luck or bitter girlfriends and wives.

"I guess I can tell you I'm not surprised about any of this," Watley told CBSSports.com in a telephone interview.

Is Watley biased? Sure she is. But Kathy Redmond, who fights for victim rights in domestic violence cases involving athletes, has worked with Watley for several years and says she's highly credible.

Marshall's background is troubling, to say the least. In 2009, he was arrested on disorderly conduct charges after police spotted Marshall and Nogami kicking and punching each other. The charges later were dropped.

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Marshall has been suspended under the league's personal conduct policy and accused (but never prosecuted) of theft. In 2007, then-Broncos teammate Darrent Williams was killed in a drive-by shooting by gang members in downtown Denver. Police say before the shooting there was an altercation between the gang members and other patrons of the establishment. One of those patrons was Marshall.

A long list of problems. A long, long list.

When asked about his past recently by the Miami Herald, Marshall said: "I'm trying hard to get past it, but it's hard to do that when everyone keeps bringing it up, dredging up bad memories. Those things happened so long ago, they're history. Yes, I've bumped my head in the past. But I learned from it, and I have fixed it. I'm at peace now. I'm on track, and I don't think anyone can derail me."

That may not be accurate.

My guess is this incident, along with the others, will scare the hell out of the Dolphins. In fact, there is rampant speculation throughout league circles that Miami is already considering cutting ties with Marshall. It's possible the Dolphins, as the Broncos before them, may not want the headaches Marshall brings in addition to his plentiful talent.

Marshall hasn't been prosecuted for all of his arrests and an arrest doesn't mean guilt. But surely, at some point, when do these things stop being coincidences?

And when do they become a character trait?

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