The woman who recanted her accusations that 49ers linebacker Reuben Foster punched her in the face 10 times will not face prosecution for lying to police or perjury.
The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office did not respond specifically to questions about Foster’s former girlfriend, Elissa Ennis, but sent a general statement that addresses the situation.
“We don’t charge domestic violence victims who falsely recant,” the statement from the DA’s office read. “We empathize with them, we support them, and we advocate for them.”
Foster's lawyer was not available for comment at the time of the news.
A judge on Wednesday cleared Foster of two felony domestic violence charges. Foster joined the team’s offseason program on Thursday after general manager John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan had stated any player who hits a woman will not have a spot on with the 49ers.
Ennis told police investigators in Los Gatos on April 11 that Foster dragged her, beat her and spit on her. Two days later, she recanted her statement. Under oath last week at the preliminary hearing, Ennis said Foster did not harm her. She said the injuries were the result of a fight with another woman the night before. According to Ennis, she lied as revenge against Foster, who threatened to end their relationship.
Judge Nona L. Klippen, in announcing her decision, concluded the prosecution did not prove probable cause in the preliminary hearing last week. The judge said photographs of Ennis’ injuries were more consistent with a purported fight after a road rage incident, which was apparently captured on video, than from the punches of an NFL player.
An hour after the judge’s decision, the DA’s office released a statement in which it expressed disappointment the case against Foster was not advanced to trial.
“Recantation is common among domestic violence victims,” the DA office's statement read. “Some are scared, some feel guilty, some are coerced, some need money. Whatever the cause, we move forward on cases when victims falsely recant because we know that if we don’t more victims will be hurt. Our commitment to domestic violence survivors is unwavering.”