Wife of football star Sanders must stay away from house
By Marice Richter
MCKINNEY, Texas (Reuters) - Football star Deion Sanders gets to stay in his sprawling Dallas area mansion and his estranged wife must stay at least 500 feet away, a judge ruled on Monday.
The couple and their attorneys have been in court for the past three days while a Collin County judge heard acrimonious testimony about an altercation that occurred at the family's estate on April 23.
Deion Sanders, 44, and Pilar Sanders, 38, were both charged with family assault in the altercation. Pilar suffered minor injuries but was jailed for a night following the incident. Her arm was bandaged when she arrived for court each day.
State District Judge Ray Wheless found that there was no family violence.
Custody arrangements for the couple's three children are still pending. A hearing is scheduled for May 15.
Peter Schulte, an attorney for Pilar Sanders, said he wasn't surprised that the Hall of Famer gets to keep the house.
"It is his separate property that he had bought and paid for," Schulte said. "We feel that we had a good day in court."
About an hour-and-a-half after the verdict, Sanders began tweeting about the decision.
"God is so good!," he tweeted. "The truth was told baby! I'm doing my dance with my old Falcon(sic) uniform on with my gold jacket over it and some cleats!"
No ruling was made on a separate charge of misdemeanor criminal mischief that police in the town of Prosper are seeking against Sanders. The charge is connected to Sanders' attempt to destroy a cell phone Pilar Sanders' friend was using to record the altercation.
"Mr. Sanders admitted under oath that he broke the phone," Schulte said. It is unclear what will happen with that charge, he said.
The couple married in 1999 and starred together in an Oxygen network reality show, "Deion & Pilar: Prime Time Love."
Known by the nicknames "Prime Time" and "Neon Deion," Sanders played cornerback for the Atlanta Falcons, the Dallas Cowboys and other NFL teams. He also played major league baseball.
He is currently an analyst for the NFL Network. Sanders filed for divorce in December.
(Reporting By Marice Richter; Editing by Mary Wisniewski and Jackie Frank)
© Thomson Reuters 2014 All rights reserved.