Attorney says Aaron Donald beat up his client on South Side, seeks investigation

Tom Davidson, The Tribune-Review, Greensburg
·3 min read

Apr. 14—Authorities have been asked to investigate a man's claims that he was beaten up by Aaron Donald, the Pittsburgh native who was chosen as the top defensive player in the NFL last year.

It happened in an alley outside Cosmo on Carson on the city's South Side, either late Saturday night or early Sunday morning, attorney Todd Hollis said. The man was identified Wednesday by Hollis as Devincent Spriggs, a 26-year-old from "out of state."

Donald, who plays defensive tackle for the L.A. Rams after a standout career at the University of Pittsburgh and Penn Hills High School, couldn't immediately be reached for comment. He had not been charged with a crime Wednesday afternoon.

"We are aware of the reports regarding Aaron Donald. We are collecting more information and will have no further comment at this time," Rams spokesman Artis Twyman said Wednesday in a statement.

Pittsburgh police didn't name Donald, but confirmed detectives at the Zone 3 station in Allentown took a report Wednesday "about an alleged assault that occurred on East Carson Street on the weekend," public safety spokeswoman Cara Cruz said.

"They are reviewing the complaint and are consulting with the district attorney's office which will determine whether charges are warranted against the accused individual," Cruz said in a statement.

Police were initially notified about the incident Sunday afternoon, when officers were called to UPMC Mercy to talk to a man who wanted to report an assault, Cruz said.

The man told police it happened in a bar somewhere on the South Side, but at that point he couldn't tell police the exact location or time it happened.

The man told police he accidentally bumped into another man at the bar. He said that man confronted him verbally, then punched and kicked him, according to police.

The man who made the complaint said he threw a bottle of alcohol, but didn't know if he had hit anyone, police said.

No one reported it to 911 and the investigation was handed over to Zone 3 officers, based in Allentown. Those officers handle the South Side of the city, Cruz said.

Hollis, along with Spriggs and Spriggs' father Vincent, made the report on Wednesday at the Allentown police station at about 11 a.m. Cruz said plainclothes detectives took a report about the incident.

"Detectives are reviewing the complaint and are consulting with the District Attorney's office which will determine whether charges are warranted against the accused individual. They are also reviewing any available video footage," Cruz said.

Police do not name people accused of crimes until they are charged, she said.

But Hollis named Donald as the man involved. Hollis wouldn't specify where Spriggs is from.

"My client was allegedly assaulted by Mr. Donald," Hollis said. "We've contacted the police and we're asking them to do an investigation."

Devincent Spriggs has a broken nose, broken orbital bone, a sprained or a broken arm, concussion and "severe trauma," Hollis said.

Neither Spriggs nor his father talked with reporters outside the police station.

"I wanted to make sure a report was filed," Hollis said.

A person who answered a number the Tribune-Review has used for Donald said it was the wrong number. A number for Donald's father, Archie wasn't in service. His mother, Anita Goggins, declined comment when reached Wednesday.

Donald was a standout at Penn Hills High School before starring at Pitt. He has had a celebrated NFL career with the Rams.

Tom Davidson is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tom at 724-226-4715, tdavidson@triblive.com or via Twitter .