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Vikings' Cook charged with felony domestic assault by strangulation

MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota Vikings cornerback Chris Cook was charged today with allegedly trying to strangle his girlfriend over the weekend, leaving her with a bloody nose and injuries to her neck.

Cook, 24, was charged with felony domestic assault by strangulation, a charge that carries a penalty of up to three years in prison if convicted, and up to a $5,000 fine.

Cook was arrested early Saturday and was still in custody at midday Tuesday. A message left with his attorney was not immediately returned.

According to the complaint, Cook became upset early Saturday when he found out his girlfriend of 10 months had spoken to an ex-boyfriend. The woman told police Cook threw her on the bed at his Eden Prairie home, got on top of her, and grabbed her neck with an open hand, constricting her ability to breathe.

The woman freed herself by grabbing Cook's hair, the complaint said. Cook then struck her in the ear, sending her crashing into a wall. As the woman ran to the living room, he grabbed her neck again and squeezed it.

The complaint said police arrived to find the woman with a bloody nose. She also had marks on her neck and hemorrhaging in her eye that is consistent with strangulation.

Earlier this year, Cook was found not guilty of brandishing a firearm after allegedly pulling a gun on a neighbor in his home state of Virginia.

Vikings coach Leslie Frazier had a talk with Cook in the offseason to reiterate the importance of staying out of trouble off the field, and the second-year player emerged as perhaps the most reliable cornerback on the field during the team's 1-5 start. At 6-foot-2, he has the size to match up with taller receivers and the speed to keep up with smaller ones.

He did not play in Sunday's 33-27 loss to Green Bay.