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Ex-football star Deion Sanders charged in altercation with wife

By Marice Richter

DALLAS (Reuters) - Former football star Deion Sanders has been charged with simple assault in his altercation with his estranged wife that got her arrested and jailed earlier in the week on a similar charge.

Sanders, 44, had claimed Pilar Sanders, 38, and her friend Dianna Boswell attacked him on Monday afternoon in his bedroom at the suburban Dallas mansion the divorcing couple still share.

After he tweeted about the incident, police in Prosper, Texas, arrested her and she spent the night in jail on a charge of misdemeanor family assault.

Further investigation led to Deion Sanders and Boswell being charged with simple assault as well, a statement from Prosper police said. The crime is a misdemeanor that can result from "offensive touching" which carries a maximum $500 fine, Collin County, Texas, authorities said.

Pilar Sanders emerged on Tuesday from a night in jail declaring her innocence. Her attorney said she was the only one injured in the altercation, having suffered a broken thumb, a split lip and a torn fingernail.

Deion Sanders is a TV analyst for the NFL Network. He was a Hall of Fame cornerback for the Dallas Cowboys and other football teams and a former Major League outfielder for several teams, including the New York Yankees.

He was granted an order of protection against his estranged wife that bars her from their home and from harassing him, according to the Collin County Sheriff's office.

The couple married in 1999 and starred in a reality show, "Deion & Pilar: Prime Time Love," that aired on the Oxygen network. Deion Sanders filed for divorce in December.

(Additional reporting by Andrew Stern. Editing by Corrie MacLaggan and Philip Barbara)