The 49ers released a statement attributed to chief executive officer Jed York, general manager John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan on Sunday night saying that Foster will not be participating in team activities as he goes through the legal process stemming from his Feb. 11 arrest.
“Reuben Foster will not participate in team activities as he is tending to his legal matters,” the team said in the statement. “As previously stated, his future with the team will be determined by the information revealed during the legal process.”
The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office announced last Thursday that it was charging Foster with felony counts of domestic violence with an allegation that he inflicted great bodily injury, forcefully attempting to prevent a victim from reporting a crime and possession of an assault weapon. He also faces a misdemeanor charge for possession of a large-capacity weapon magazine.
Those charges were the result of a Feb. 11 disturbance call to a residence in Los Gatos. In a release from the district attorney’s office last week, officials said Foster, 24, physically attacked his live-in girlfriend, leaving her bruised and with a ruptured eardrum. The report went on to say Foster dragged her by her hair, physically threw her out of the house and punched her in the head eight to 10 times.
Foster was arraigned last week and ordered to have no contact with the woman involved in the case while remaining free on $75,000 bond. A plea hearing was scheduled for April 30.
The Niners are set to begin their offseason program Monday along with all other NFL teams that didn’t hire new head coaches. The voluntary workouts are focused on strength and conditioning for the first two weeks followed by three weeks of on-field work and individual drill instruction and capped off with 10 organized team activities.
Foster has spent time this offseason working out at the Niners’ facility on his own but will not be joining the rest of his teammates as they start the offseason program.
After Foster was charged last week, the Niners issued a statement saying they intended to follow the matter and noted that Foster “is aware that his place in our organization is under great scrutiny and will depend on what is learned through the legal process.”
In addition to the aforementioned felony charges in California, Foster is also facing second-degree marijuana possession charges in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, after an arrest there on Jan. 12. His next hearing for that is scheduled for May 2.
Either case could lead to discipline from the NFL, up to and including suspension. Foster’s cases will be reviewed under the league’s policies on substance abuse and personal conduct.
The league, in a statement released last week, said it was going to “continue to monitor all developments in this matter which is under review of the personal conduct policy.”