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Ex-Patriot player, wife arrested after scrap

Johnsons call dispute a misunderstanding

Ted Johnson, three-time Super Bowl champion and a former linebacker for the New England Patriots, and his wife were arrested this week following a domestic dispute at their home in Weston.

Both were charged with assault and battery after local police responded to a call about 8 p.m. Sunday from Johnson's wife, Jacqueline Johnson, who said they had been in a physical fight, said Melissa Sherman of the Middlesex district attorney's office.

The couple released a joint statement through their lawyer, Edward Bigham, that reads, ``On Sunday, July 16, the Weston police were called to our home as a result of a misunderstanding." The statement requests privacy from the media and says the Johnsons decline to comment further .

When officers arrived at the home Sunday night, according to a police report, they found Jacqueline Johnson, 40, sitting on a stone wall along the driveway of their three-story house. She told officers that she and her 33-year-old husband had been arguing in their car on the way home, but did not specify what the argument was about.

After they got home, Jacqueline Johnson told police, she sent her three children into the family room while she and her husband continued their dispute in an office on the first floor. She told police that the argument escalated and that it turned violent when Ted Johnson grabbed her wrist, twisted it behind her back, pushed her into a bookcase, and then used his fingers to push her head repeatedly into the bookcase, according to the police report.

Jacqueline Johnson told police she began to fight back, punching, pushing, and scratching, court documents said.

Ted Johnson told police he and his wife were arguing over a medication prescribed to him that she wanted to take, according to the police report. When he tried to take the medication away from her, she began punching him in the upper body and head , he told police . That's when he grabbed her, twisted her arm, and pushed her into a bookcase, the police report said.

The couple were arraigned together Tuesday morning in Waltham District Court, where they pleaded not guilty. Their next hearing is scheduled for Sept. 7.

Doug Bailey, a public relations consultant for the family, said the incident was blown out of proportion.

``Neither one is pressing charges against one another," Bailey said. ``They've signed affidavits agreeing not to testify against one another."

Johnson retired last July after 10 years with the team because of complications with head injuries he had sustained. He was a staff analyst for WBZ-TV (Channel 4) last season.

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