Colts Deny Muhammad Fine

Steve Muhammad reportedly was fined $10,000 by the Indianapolis Colts after being charged with battering his pregnant wife and his 6-year-old stepson.

Colts president Bill Polian called the report "erroneous" and the agent for the rookie defensive back said he knew nothing about a fine.

Nichole Muhammad died seven hours after giving birth to a stillborn child. The coroner attributed her death to injuries from a car accident, not an alleged beating by her husband.

Steve Muhammad faces possible prosecution for three misdemeanor counts of battery. He was arrested Oct. 28 and freed on $30,000 bond pending an initial hearing Dec. 21.

The Indianapolis Star and USA Today on Wednesday quoted Mrs. Muhammad's lawyer, Greg Garrison, as saying the player had been fined $10,000.

"Obviously, I've been talking to the Colts and Steve as well, and neither one mentioned anything about a fine," agent Don Wilson told The Associated Press. "I would probably be told in the ordinary course of things."

Wilson said his client has been making arrangements for the funerals, which will be in California on Saturday. Muhammad did not practice Wednesday. He won't be with the team this week and won't play Sunday against the New York Giants.

"As soon as he comes back, he'll be back on the team," coach Jim Mora said.

Wilson said that after the funeral Eric Muhammad will return to Indianapolis with his stepfather and live with him and the couple's young daughter.

Eric Muhammad was allegedly hit by Muhammad when he tried to defend his mother with a plastic baseball bat. The couple was said to be arguing about money.

Garrison, the prosecutor at Mike Tyson's rape trial, had been contacted by Mrs. Muhammad about legal action against her husband. Garrison's secretary, Cathy Schackel, said Wednesday he would not comment. However, she said no papers had been filed for divorce, separation or a restraining order.

"I know they were having problems," Wilson said. "But an attorney had not contacted either Steve or me with respect to representing her."

Beverly Phillips, a spokeswoman for the Marion County prosecutor, said a decision on proceeding with the case probably will not be made until next week.

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