Injuries helping to keep Steelers focused on defense

Associated Press

In this file photo, Pittsburgh linebacker Anthony Chickillo makes a tackle against the New York Jets. Chickillo was charged with simple assault Sunday.

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Anthony Chickillo was charged with simple assault Sunday after allegedly injuring his girlfriend during an argument about gambling at Nemacolin Woodlands in Wharton Township.

State police said they were called to the couple’s hotel room around 1:40 a.m., where Chickillo, 26, of Tampa, and his girlfriend, Alysha Newman, 25, of Ontario, told authorities they got into an argument over table games at the resort’s Lady Luck Casino. The argument continued in their hotel room, police reported.

Newman told police that Chickillo grabbed her by both of her biceps and forced her against a wall and door in the room, injuring her. She reportedly told police she punched him in the head, and Chickillo threw her to the ground and smashed her cellphone. She told police she believes Chickillo intended to injure her. She locked herself in the bathroom until police arrived, according to the affidavit of probable cause filed in the case.

Police said Newman had visible injuries to her left and right biceps, including redness and bruising. Chickillo did not have visible injuries, police said. He admitted to pushing her to the ground, according to court documents.

In addition to simple assault, Chickillo was charged with harassment and criminal mischief. He was arraigned and released on $10,000 unsecured bail by Fayette County Magisterial District Judge Mike Defino. Newman was cited for harassment.

Chickillo’s preliminary hearing is scheduled for Oct. 30. Court documents do not indicate whether he has hired an attorney.

Steelers spokesman Burt Lauten said the team is aware of the incident and is still gathering information. Chickillo, a five-year veteran, has one tackle and half a sack in three games for the Steelers this season, playing primarily on special teams.

The Steelers did not play this week. The players were given the weekend off by the team. Pittsburgh is scheduled to return to practice today. The Steelers (2-4) host winless Miami on Oct. 28.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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