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Harbaugh: Ravens acted after seeing Ray Rice footage

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John Harbaugh told reporters on Monday evening that the Baltimore Ravens came to a swift decision to release Ray Rice after watching footage of Rice assaulting his then-fiancee in a hotel elevator.

Harbaugh said Monday was the first time the Ravens had seen the footage, which TMZ posted on its website earlier in the day. Rice was suspended indefinitely by the NFL shortly after the Ravens announced their decision to part ways with the former All-Pro.

"I had a chance to talk to Ray along with (general manager) Ozzie (Newsome) this afternoon after we did it," Harbaugh said. "I have nothing but hope and goodwill for Ray and Janay and we'll do whatever we can going forward to help them as they go forward to try to make the best of it."

Harbaugh met with owner Steve Bisciotti and Newsome before making the decision. The coach described it as "not a long meeting." When asked by a reporter why the Ravens hadn't seen the elevator footage sooner, Harbaugh replied, "I have no answer for that."

Harbaugh was open in his support for Rice as the running back attempted to move on with his career this summer. Harbaugh, who took over as Ravens coach prior to Rice's rookie year in 2008, was asked if he still felt that way.

"Everything I said in terms of what I believe I stand behind," he said. "I believe that still. And I'll always believe those things and we'll always stand in support of them as a couple. And that's not going to change."

Harbaugh was reluctant to explain why the elevator video led to organizational action.

"I don't know if I want to get into all the details about it," he said. "I think it's pretty obvious and pretty apparent. Everybody's seen the video, and we'll just leave it at that."

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