Packers linebacker Erik Walden was charged Wednesday with misdemeanor disorderly conduct-domestic abuse following a fight with his girlfriend.
Walden did not appear for a Brown County Circuit Court hearing and defense attorney Steve Richards entered a not guilty plea on his behalf. Walden remains free on bond and is due back in court Dec. 27.
If convicted, Walden would face up to 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. County District Attorney John Zakowski acknowledged the possibility of a plea bargain agreement that would spare Walden from serving additional jail time.
Richards noted that the charge Walden faces is less severe than what he was arrested for last month, suspicion of felony domestic violence-substantial battery.
“It’s clear, I think, at least from the district attorney’s perspective, the initial charge that jailed Mr. Walden was probably inappropriate,” Richards said. “Now that they’ve looked at it, I think they feel that something occurred, but what it is amounts to no more than a disorderly conduct.”
Walden was arrested after a Nov. 25 dispute with his live-in girlfriend, identified in the complaint as Erika T. Palmer.
“He was going to Georgia to visit his mother,” Richards said. “He’s having his jersey retired at his old high school, but he was leaving his girlfriend and the two children behind. She was upset with that, and there was an apparent argument over that, and then one thing led to another. And I think the injury sustained by Ms. Palmer was an accident, and that’s pretty much confirmed by both parties.”
Richards said there is a no-contact order in place between Walden and his girlfriend.