Entertainment Sports Zac Stacy's Ex-Girlfriend Says He Deserves Chance to 'Be Better' as He's Jailed for Domestic Abuse Kristin Evans advocated for mental health treatment rather than prison time on Tuesday, saying it would protect the son she shared with Zac Stacey from further "trauma" By Julia Moore Julia Moore Twitter Julia Moore is a digital news writer at PEOPLE. She recently received a Bachelor's in in Journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, and has been an avid PEOPLE reader for years. People Editorial Guidelines Published on February 28, 2023 11:38 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: AP Photo, Kristin Evans/Instagram Former NFL player Zac Stacy has been sentenced to six months in jail and one year of probation following a 2021 attack on his ex-girlfriend, Kristin Evans. The attack — captured on home surveillance cameras and shared online by Evans and a friend in November 2021 — showed her being thrown into a TV and onto the floor by Stacy in front of their son, who was five months old at the time. The former St. Louis Rams player reportedly fled the state of Florida after an arrest warrant was issued, according to local NBC affiliate WESH. A week later, he was arrested upon arrival at the Orlando International Airport and charged with aggravated battery and criminal mischief. Earlier this month in Orange County, Florida, Stacy, 31, pleaded guilty to two charges of criminal mischief, and as a result of his plea, the battery charges against him were dropped, WESH reported. Former NFL Player Zac Stacy Arrested, Charged with Felonies Following Assault of Ex-Girlfriend Kristin Evans/Instagram On Monday, he appeared in court in Orange County and received his sentencing — six months in jail and one year of probation. Despite this, Evans, who shares son ZJ with Stacy, spoke out in response to the sentencing on Instagram Tuesday morning, advocating for mental health treatment rather than jail time. "People who are willing to put in work to be better, deserve an opportunity to show that they can be better," she wrote in the video's caption. Evans said that at first, following the attack in 2021, Stacy "showed no signs of remorse and he ran to another state, so I released the videos so he would get arrested." In the time since then, however, she said the former NFL running back had made significant improvements to his life. White Sox Pitcher Mike Clevinger Accused of Domestic Violence, Child Abuse "He decided to change," said Evans. "Through cognitive behavioral therapy, he was able to make a significant adjustment in his behavior and communication. And over the last six months, he's consistently shown an improvement as well as our son enjoying spending time with him." Evans added that many people who advocate for harsh sentencing also don't understand the difficulty that domestic abuse survivors have in trying to balance their safety "with what's right for our children." "I have to speak to this man and exchange a child and co-parent a child with this man for the rest of my life," Evans said. She also expressed that she "didn't advocate for jail" because of "the lack of resources, the lack of rehabilitation, the lack of education for mental health, and the psychological effect it may have on our son, having already developed a relationship with his father." At the close of her post, she asked for "grace in understanding" that she's not "being easy" on her ex-boyfriend, but trying to protect her son "from anymore trauma." Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Uncredited/AP/Shutterstock In the days following the circulation of the video of the attack in November 2021, Evans spoke to WESH about the experience and confirmed that she was the woman abused in the alarming video footage. "The physical abuse began in May," she said at the time. "I didn't report it. I was pregnant at the time. I wanted my son's dad to be there for me and for the birth of his first child. So I forgave him." "He has bullied me for so long that at one point, I believed it was my fault," she continued. "It's disturbing and disgusting to see things people have said online about what did I do. I did nothing. I never did anything to deserve something like this — no one could do anything to deserve something like this." In December 2021, Evans was granted an injunction for protection against domestic violence, giving her a five-year window of safety from Stacy. The injunction included a no-contact clause, prohibiting communication until after the criminal case was resolved, according to court documents obtained by PEOPLE. In photos Evans shared with TMZ of the injuries she suffered from the attack, bruises and cuts could be seen along her arms and legs. If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or go to thehotline.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.