Sports

No Charges Against Von Miller: Much Ado About Nothing

Von Miller meeting the press after an October 2019 Broncos win over the Tennessee Titans.
Von Miller meeting the press after an October 2019 Broncos win over the Tennessee Titans. YouTube file photo
In mid-January, news leaked that a criminal investigation had been launched by the Parker Police Department into Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller. But less than two weeks after receiving the case, the 18th Judicial District DA has declined to file charges.

The decision was issued during the classic Friday afternoon news dump period, when most readers are already focused on the weekend, but the DA's office is declining to say what alleged offenses were at the heart of the inquiry in the first place.

Here's the statement from the 18th Judicial District explaining its rationale (the italicized section appears in the original):
The Parker Police Department submitted a criminal case against Vonnie B’VSean Miller to this office. After reviewing all of the materials, the District Attorney’s Office of the 18th Judicial District has determined that no charges will be filed in this case.

The American Bar Association Criminal Justice Standards for the Prosecution Function Standard 3-4.3 outlines the Minimum Requirements for Filing and Maintaining Criminal Charges. This standard notes:

“A prosecutor should seek or file criminal charges only if the prosecutor reasonably believes that the charges are supported by probable cause, that admissible evidence will be sufficient to support conviction beyond a reasonable doubt, and that the decision to charge is in the interests of justice.”
Standard 3-4.3(a).

Based on our review of information that is currently available, we cannot meet that standard and must decline to file charges in this case.

It would be inappropriate to comment about details of an investigation in which there was never a citation, arrest or filing. The complainant, suspect and witnesses have a legitimate privacy interest and we will respect that.
This bizarre saga began on January 15, when the Parker PD's probe into the former Super Bowl MVP went public. The brouhaha seemed perfectly timed for the Broncos to use as an excuse to dump Miller, who missed all of the 2020 season with an injury and had a subpar year in 2019. Miller is entering the final year of a $114.5 million contract he inked in 2016. If he's on the roster, he'll count $22.15 million toward the Broncos' salary cap. If he's not, the Broncos will save $18 million that the team can use to secure other talent.

Much has changed since then. During a press conference on March 4, new general manager George Paton said he wanted Miller back in orange if the criminal matter could be put to bed — which it was in short order. Now the smart money's on Miller remaining with the squad, albeit after his pact is restructured to save the Broncos a few million bucks.


For his part, Miller deserves to be pissed off that the investigation's existence was leaked in the first place. Moments ago on 104.3 The Fan, sports talker (and former Bronco) Tyler Polumbus suggested that Miller has grounds to sue the Parker Police Department over how everything went down.

That would be a helluva twist to an already strange story. 
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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts