Janay Palmer, Ray Rice’s Fiancee: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Janay Rice is the wife of disgraced former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice, who was cut Monday just hours after TMZ posted surveillance footage showing Ray Rice clocking his wife in the head inside an Atlantic City elevator in February. The two were engaged at the time, and Janay was known by her maiden name, Janay Palmer.

Both the Ravens and the NFL have been the subjects of massive criticism for waiting until after the video emerged to issue a severe punishment to Rice, who was suspended in May for a mere two games for his role in the incident.

Here’s what you need to know about Janay:

1. Ray Rice’s Attorney Initially Described the Incident as a ‘Minor Physical Altercation’

Janay Palmer Ray Rice, Ray Rice Fiancee Arrest, Janay Palmer Assault


According to multiple published reports, Rice was with a group of people at the Royal Jelly Burlesque Nightclub, which is part of the Revel Casino complex, the night of the altercation. The casino’s director of operations, Scott Russo, told The Baltimore Sun, “When he was here, they were have a great time – no issues. We took care of him like we do any of the celebrities that come in.”

Rice’s lawyer, Michael Diamondstein, told the media, “We haven’t seen any charging documents yet. There was an argument that included Ray. I can’t give any specifics because we haven’t seen the document yet. Once we’re able to go through the evidence, it should wind up to little more than a misunderstanding.”

The Ravens also issued a statement at the time:

We are aware of the Friday night situation with Ray Rice and his fiancee. We have spoken with Ray, and know that they returned home together after being detained.

Here’s the original video of Rice dragging Palmer out of the elevator, posted by TMZ in February.

2. Her Graduation Was Gift From Rice Was an Engagement Ring

Janay is a graduate of Towson University in Baltimore, where she majored in communications. Her graduation gift from Rice was an engagement ring and a new car.

“I almost passed out when he told me the car was mine. I’m just happy I decided to be nice that day instead of letting him get his own wallet,” she said at the time. The couple were married in March 2014.

On March 27, Ray Rice was indicted on charges of aggravated assault relating to the incident.

3. They Had Their First Date at the Cheesecake Factory

The couple have one daughter, Rayven, who was born in February 2012. They are also high school sweethearts meeting when they were 16-years old. Rice is originally from New Rochelle, New York and Palmer is from nearby Mount Vernon. The couple had their first date at the Cheesecake Factory where Palmer says, “I was so nervous, I didn’t even eat dinner. I just ate a slice of cheesecake.”

4. Her Sister Played Basketball at West Virginia

Janay’s sister, Taylor, played basketball at West Virginia University, where she led the Mountaineers to four straight NCAA tournament appearances and was named Big 12 Sixth Man of the Year as a senior in 2013-14.

Taylor finished her career tied for fifth in West Virginia history with 215 made 3-pointers and fourth in history with 646 career attempts. She became the 30th player in WVU history and the 12th under coach Mike Carey to score 1,000 career points and finished her career with 1,097 points.

5. After Being Punched in the Face, She Was Charged With Assault

Janay was initially charged with simple assault after the altercation, though the video posted by TMZ shows her lightly hitting Ray before Ray clobbers her.

Despite Janay’s status as the victim in the assault, the Ravens orchestrated a press conference at which both Ray and Janay apologized for their roles in the incident. (Watch the video from the press conference above.)

The Ravens even tweeted from their official Twitter account that Janay “deeply regrets” her role in the incident — a tweet that many have said put on display the organization’s stunning lack of sensitivity about domestic violence.

Janay was accused in 2010 of stealing a $1,000 dress from a mall in Baltimore. She was found guilty and given probation on top of a $400 fine. She said at the time:

I immediately started bawling. I didn’t want people to think I was a thief. I thank them because I’ve learned to grow thicker skin.

I’m just happy that Ray and I have a good foundation. We’ve been through a lot, and we trust each other, so as long as were on the same page, the media has little relevance in our life.




I really don’t feel bad for her at all. I do not believe for one second that this was the first time that he hit her. Why should everyone feel so sad and sorry for her, like she is trapped in this relationship, when she has obviously chosen to stay for financial perks, oh yeah, I forgot, love too? After all, she did in fact marry him one month later. What does this say about her being “trapped”? Yeah, trapped in a relationship with a lot of monetary benefits!!


Do you even proof read what you write? I mean seriously you sound like such a jaded, awful person. You really believe that people who are being beaten by there spouse aren’t trapped if there is a lot of money involved?? SERIOUSLY. Have you heard of Ike & Tina turner??? I think you must have some deep seeded issue with women, or abuse or something in order to defend this mans actions. He is so many times larger than her, he is a freaking football player HELLO, HE COULD KILL HER WITH HIS HANDS. And your just like “Yeah, trapped in a relationship with a lot of monetary benefits!!”, WOW insensitive MUCH. Not to mention he was idolized by the public before today, before people saw that tape. If that tape hadn’t been released no one would have ever known how awful he is, because unfortunately no one would have ever believed her. I think you need to figure out what went on in your past or maybe current to make you write such awful things.


I feel bad for this woman. She needs to get away from this horrible man and the situation. Please be a role model to your daughter! Do not stay with this man and let her think it’s okay for men to beat women!


She struck him first and she also charged at him before he hit her back. Do not go taking her side when she clearly hit him first and lunged at him. He was on the other side of the elevator and she charged at him prompting him to punch her. Women are aggressors too and if we do not acknowledge women who hit/beat on a man, we are condoning the abuse on men. If its wrong for a man to hit a woman…it is just as wrong for a woman to hit a man. To add on to her violent behavior she is also a thief with a criminal record. What example are you sending by teaching women its okay to hit a man and teaching men its wrong to strike a woman back? If you don’t want to get hit keep your hands to yourself. She is just as wrong as he is and she should face criminal charges for simple assault. He should not be condemned because she assaulted him and would have continued to hit him, if he didn’t strike her back. We are constantly portraying a woman as a victim even when the woman is wrong. She had no right to hit him as he had no right to strike back. Both are wrong and both should face criminal prosecution for their roles that night.


Ray is that you tho??

I think acknowledging that she did attack him, and that was wrong, is important. HOWEVER his reaction was grossly unnecessary. Unless she was armed with a weapon he could have simply picked her up or blocked small advances. Let’s not forget he is a beefy football player.

His response when she was passed out was also truly disgusting. Like maybe a little concern could have been had other than lack lusterly attempted to drag her from the elevator -_-

Moral of this story is use your words and leave this fool.

Jenny Started It

“Let’s not forget he is a beefy football player.”

Let us also not forget, Janay (BTW, Her name sounds like when Forest Gumpy says “Jenny”) is also one beefy looking bitch… Who, lets not also forget, committed the first two assaults and then a third assault on the man helping her up well after she regained consciousness.


she didn’t hit him first she brushed him off and then he hit her. she did in fact charged after him the second time but wouldn’t you have too. I mean I know that if someone hit hit me i would be really pissed and would want to hit him back. Anyway he didn’t have to hit her that hard the second or the first time for that matter i mean if he wanted to control her he could have. He is a 212lb running back and she is a slender women who had no weapon in her hand. If he wanted to stop her he could have but instead he decided to punch her so hard that SHE PASSED OUT, do you realize how hard that punch had to be. Anyway i agree with you that abuse against men should be publicize more but in this case ray rice was wrong and what he did to her was disgusting,


I’m not defending Ray Rice, but the video is inconclusive. Did he hit her so hard that she passed out, or did her head hit the rail so hard that she passed out? Did he punch her or was he pushing her away? Did her momentum exacerbate how hard she hit the rail? Again, I don’t think that men should hit women, but I also think that men shouldn’t hit other men and women shouldn’t men. A lot of people are assuming what must have happened, but no one can tell for certain what happened because the video has poor quality. I’m just saying that the video calls for speculation as to what happened, and emotions play into what those speculations are. The only two people that know what happened were in the elevator and they tell a different story. Battered wife syndrome exists and is real, but Battered wife syndrome is not present in every case.


His punch caused her to fall sideways and hit her head on the elevator railing. If that wasn’t there, she might not have gotten hurt as much, and maybe this whole thing wouldn’t have played out like this.

He’s a player in a violent sport. His brain is wired to react in different ways. She got violent, only she doesn’t weigh 200 lbs. If she did, he might be the one with more than a bruised ego.


I agree she didn’t hit him first ? Wth? Are we watching the same video? She was walking by and as u could clearly see he spits at her which is why she lightly smacked him, then in the elevated he punches her in the face first BEFORE she lunges at that piece of shit.


HE KNOCKED HER OUT COLD! Are you seriously attempting to blame her…. WOW. Are you even aware of how awful what you wrote sounds. Are you in a domestic violence situation cause it sounds like you are making excuses for why domestic violence is ok, AND just to let you know IT’S NEVER OK. ALSO: YES HE SHOULD FACE CRIMINAL PROSECUTION, HE COULD HAVE KILLED HER, HE IS THREE TIMES HER SIZE. AND PS: ARE YOU REALLY TRYING TO SAY THAT BECAUSE SHE HAS A CRIMINAL PAST, SHE DESERVES TO BE BEATEN BY SOMEONE??? WOW, you have really WARPED views.


At what point did SHE hit HIM first? Outside the elevator he SPITS ON HER and she swats his shoulder. In the elevator he “lightly” hits her, to which she then advances on him and then he HITS HER AGAIN. This is ridiculous, the fact that you are trying to blame her. Even more ridiculous is that your name implies you are female. We as women are constantly trying to bring each other down and paint other women as negative parties. You are a disappointment to our gender.


My one hope in this world is that people like you have dried up eggs and are never, under any circumstances, allowed to produce offspring.



please watch the video again he slapped in the face that’s why she charge

Tj Irish

princessjane I will be blunt. You are complete freaking idiot. WTF are you talking about? She barely touched Rice who is a Professional Football player or was one. I tell you what Rice did. That was not losing his temper and hitting her. That was a CRIMINAL THUG HIT. Watch the freaking video. After going full on out blasting her. Janay bounces off the elevator glass and slams her head into the elevator railing. Ray Rice hit her soo hard and fast it is a blur… Yet you are on here posting “she hit him first?” Rice is actually lucky she didn’t die from that blow and hitting her head. Ray Rice has issues. You don’t hit any loved one like that EVER!!!!!!!! You get it! NOT EVER!!! I wonder if Rice is a sociopath. He obviously needs to see a shrink.

I actually came here because I was curious about Janay. Why she would marry Rice after what he did. I did get a clue. High School sweethearts, grew up near each other. Rice bought her a car and engagement ring on her college graduation. In other words it seems Ray Rice is the only man Janay has ever been in love with. Sounds like classic battered woman. I am willing to wager that Rice has hit her before. She is out there talking about it being her fault. Really? She got mad and barely slapped Ray Rice. Rice goes nuclear on her almost killing her. Yet she says it’s partly her fault. Whoa Lady get a freaking clue.


Surveillance videos are not HD quality – they’re meant to be some record of something that might have happened, not a sports reply speed. They typically use less resolution and a slower record speed (frames per second) to save storage space. That’s why the hit looks like a blur – not because he hit so fast. You ever see that fast videos they use for baseball games? The record speed is so quick that you can see the stitches on the ball as it goes to the plate.


The difference is he can knock her unconscious do you think a slap from a petite female could make an NFL player flinch? Screw him and your pathetic justifications


WTF video were U watching, are U a battered woman? Smh, there ARE some women out there, that actually LIKE to b hit! Wake up ladies, wake up dammmmm


@princess bitch you stuipd. You yourself are in a DV Situation. Get help dum bitch, he kept spitting on her.

Clearly Amazed

people need to stop saying that. she did NOT strike him first. she YANKED HER ARM AWAY FROM HIM after he cornered her by the buttons. you can see it. he then hit her in the face and she went to hit him back and that is when he punched her in the face. wth does her past of stealing a dress have any relevance? she is not wrong. she barely touched him


This is an all call for all in support of Ray Rice to meet on Thursday at 5pm @the M&T stadium on Russell Street side come out to show your support bring signs and wear any rice gear ………….


Are you serious? First off, it is undisputed by everyone (including Rice) that he pushed her first (watch the video), so your whole argument is off-base. Nonetheless, legally he can only use reasonable force to protect himself and ONLY if he genuinely believes he’s physical safety is in danger. He certainly did NOT use reasonable means — he KNOCKED HER OUT COLD for quite a while. And if you think she “charged” at him and “lunged” at him, again, watch the video — taking two steps toward him with her fists down is far from charging and lunging. Sad, sad state if you think his actions are justified. AND, he treats her like a piece of meat as she’s passed out cold. Lucky for him that she didn’t suffer a brain bleed, then he’d be facing murder charges.


I agree totally… Didn’t Solange punch Jay Z with ALL her might just the other day, and people said NOTHING. All they did was diss Jay Z. All I’m saying is if you gonna be about equal gender rights and no domestic violence, then be consistant, if you didn’t criticize Solange then leave Ray alone


If you looked at the tape he spit on her before they got into the elevator so don’t make it seem like he is a saint and didn’t do anything.


I can’t help but think what fowl fowl words were coming from his abusive mouth when she lunged at him. He’s cold, he’s not in an altered state, he is abusive 100%. Verbal abuse is exhausting and i couldn’t imagine the attack she faced when those doors closed. She’s a victim, in denial but still a victim. How many women won’t give up on their man because they’ve invested so much into their relationship, come insults, stalking cheating, even physical abuse. What she needs to know it’s that it’s ok she’s not alone and there is hope after leaning someone like this. I know it’s hard but you really must value your life and your child’s over $$$ … I’d like to read her success story one day. Good luck Ray 3% of abusers change but first comes the realization that others aren’t responsible for your problems. I hope people are more aware of the amount of this kind of abuse going on all around them, to those who support i say don’t just take about it but find your local shelter or non profit and ask how can i help??! October is domestic violence awareness month let your big voice be heard…


Please…she barely touched him. While this 210#…professional athlete knocked her out cold!…The sad part is that he couldn’t or didn’t even pick her up off the floor. He is a piece of shit.


There is no evidence that he beats her on a regular basis.. and also absolutely no evidence that neither ray rice or his wife thinks it’s ok for men to beat women. Sentiments like yours is exactly what she was talking about- being exposed to public judgement, people telling her what to do and what not to do. The thing is, we don’t know their life. It’s much more complicated than bits and pieces we get from the media and way more personal- they’ve been together since they were 16. Im in no way condoning what’s been done or supporting ray rice, but I think it’s wrong for strangers to label her and judge her situation.

Discuss on Facebook