Packers' Barnett Faces Charges

Green Bay Packers linebacker Nick Barnett will be charged with two misdemeanor counts of disorderly conduct related to the altercation he had at an Appleton nightclub in June, the lead prosecutor said Wednesday.

It is unlikely, however, that Barnett will face a suspension from the National Football League. The more stringent personal conduct policy put in place by Commissioner Roger Goodell states that “unless the case involves significant bodily harm, a first offense will generally not result in discipline.”

Miami Dolphins linebacker Joey Porter was fined three game checks after he pled guilty to one count of misdemeanor assault in May.

Door County Assistant District Attorney Ray Pelrine, the special prosecutor in the case, said Barnett has no prior convictions. Pelrine also said that he has not spoken to anyone from the NFL about the case.

The Packers said they won’t have any comment until the case is adjudicated.

“This matter now is in the hands of the legal system,” team spokesman Jeff Blumb said in a statement. “Out of respect for that process, the Packers will not have anything further to say at this time.”

If convicted, Barnett could be sentenced to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine for each count.

Barnett, 26, was arrested in the early morning hours of June 17 and booked at the Outagamie County Jail.

Appleton police saw Barnett arguing with another person outside the Wet nightclub on College Ave. After interviewing witnesses, the police had reason to believe that Barnett was involved in an altercation earlier in the evening with a woman inside the bar. Barnett was then arrested.

A special prosecutor was appointed in the case after Outagamie Country District Attorney Carrie Schneider recused herself. She didn’t want the appearance of impropriety after it became known the company where her husband is employed had prior business dealings with Barnett.

The official filing of the complaint in Outagamie County Circuit Court could take up to three weeks. An initial court appearance by Barnett can’t take place until a few weeks after the filing of the complaint. And Pelrine could not estimate when a trial would take place, if it went to trial.