(KIRKLAND, Washington) — U.S. women’s soccer star Hope Solo will go to trial on domestic violence charges next year.
Solo, the 33-year-old, two-time Olympic gold medalist and star goalie for the U.S. women’s team, appeared in Kirkland Municipal Court in Washington on Tuesday, where a judge set a Jan. 20 trial date. A Jan. 6 hearing also was scheduled.
Solo has been accused of assaulting her sister and 17-year-old nephew at a party on June 21 at her sister’s home in suburban Seattle.
She was charged with two counts of fourth-degree domestic violence assault, and has pleaded not guilty.
Since the charges surfaced, Solo has become a symbol of controversy as some alleged she represents a double-standard in the world of sports, particularly in light of recent, high-profile domestic violence cases in the NFL.
While her case has been pending, Solo has been allowed to play and has had the full support of U.S. Soccer.
In a statement, U.S. Soccer said it “takes the issue of domestic violence very seriously” but “stands by our decision to allow her to participate.”
ABC News sports commentator Christine Brennan said there is “absolutely a double standard.”
“Hope Solo continued to play, some of these National Football League players did not, and that’s all about the fact that she’s a woman and they’re men,” Brennan said.
In a rare move, Jill Loyden, one of Solo’s former teammates, broke ranks, chiding the league in an Oct. 6 op-ed in USA Today.
Loyden said U.S. Soccer must be the gold standard on and off the field, adding: “I believe that individuals are innocent until proven guilty, but in failing to take action against players’ behavior off the field, the league is not living up to its responsibilities. U.S. Soccer needs to send the right message. They need to communicate that domestic violence is never OK and that it will not be tolerated.”
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