KENT, Wash. — Former Seattle Seahawks offensive lineman Chad Wheeler pleaded not guilty Monday to three criminal charges stemming from an alleged attack last month against his girlfriend that left her with a dislocated arm and other injuries.
Wheeler, who is out of jail after posting $400,000 bail, entered the plea to domestic violence assault, unlawful imprisonment and resisting arrest in King County Superior Court, KOMO-TV reported.
Wheeler’s lawyers asked the court to allow him to return to Hawaii, where he has a residence, but the judge ordered Wheeler to remain in Washington state and to wear a home monitoring device as a condition of his pre-trial release. His trial is set to begin April 6.
Wheeler, 27, was arrested Jan. 22 after police say he strangled his girlfriend, dislocated her arm, tried to suffocate her and smashed in her face after she refused to bow to him.
If he is convicted of all the charges against him, he faces a standard sentencing range of roughly nine to 12 years in prison.
Wheeler’s girlfriend was at the hearing with her arm in a sling.
A victim’s advocate read a statement from her that said, in part: “I want you to know that I believe that as long as (Wheeler) is not in custody I am not safe. … Chad never called the police (after the assault) even though he thought I was dead. Now, Chad is out of custody staying in a hotel watching this play out on social media. This current status places my safety at risk, and I do not believe that a protective order or a condition of release is sufficient to keep me safe.”