MEDINA, Ohio — Longtime Cleveland sports personality and talk show host Tony Rizzo appeared in Medina Municipal Court Thursday where his attorneys and Medina city prosecutors made a plea deal.
Rizzo entered a plea of no contest to persistent disorderly conduct. He was arrested on a domestic violence charge and originally pleaded not guilty, but then changed his plea to the amended charge.
According to a Medina police report, officers were called to Rizzo’s home in December 2013 after his wife called 911.
She told the dispatcher, “My husband is hurting me, and he’s very irate and I’m really scared.”
Mrs. Rizzo went on to say she had been choked and hit in the face. She also indicated she placed the 911 call from a locked bathroom.
After Rizzo was arrested and charged with domestic violence, his wife asked if the charges could be dropped and changed her story about what happened.
Matt Lanier, Assistant Medina City Prosecutor told FOX 8 News, “She submitted an affidavit to our office and to the defense which indicated she had in fact initiated the physical confrontation by striking him with a glass, and that all he did was defend himself, so she essentially put forward two different versions of the facts. We had to consider that when deciding to reduce this charge or go forward and we did.”
Rizzo could face up to 30 days in jail, but Medina Municipal Court Judge Dale Chase has the option of placing him on probation.
Tony Rizzo is the host of The Really Big Show on WKNR radio, and hosts The Rizzo Show, which airs each Sunday on Fox 8.
WKNR said Thursday that a statement would not be issued, but the following was released immediately following Rizzo’s arrest:
“We do not believe it is appropriate to comment on Tony’s personal life. Tony is an exemplary teammate and member of the community and his status with us is unaffected.”
A sentencing hearing was not scheduled at the time of this report.