12:02 PM PT — The player targeted in the locker room incident has issued a statement, through the Rock Island County State’s Attorney’s Office … saying, “I want to make it known that I’m fine.”
“Everyone is worried about me and showing concern for me and I really appreciate it.”
“Second, can everyone please stop talking about the incident and video? I understand everyone wants justice for me and they want what they think is right to be done, but I already made my feelings known to the police and my friends about how I feel about everything.”
“I love the football team I’m on and they’re good guys. I know that personally. I talked to the people involved individually and they apologized. We had a heartfelt talk about it and I told them how I felt. So please don’t harass, bully, or threaten them at all.”
“Lastly, I want to get my life back together, and my student-athlete life back on track, so if you do ever see me or know who I am, treat me as a human first, not a victim.”
A black high school football player in Moline, Illinois was forced to sit in a locker stuffed with banana peels — while a fellow player threatened to break both of his knees if he refused.
The incident was captured on video and published on social media platforms — and now, the cops are involved.
The 11-second video was reportedly shot on Thursday night — but in less than 24 hours, the footage had already made its way to the Moline Police Dept.
And, when the team returned from an away game on Friday evening, the cops were waiting at Moline High School to interview everyone who had a role in the disturbing incident.
“On the evening of April 9, 2021 the Moline Police Department became aware of a shocking viral video circulating on social media,” Moline Police Chief Darren Gault said in a statement.
“The video depicted a disturbing racist scene involving a Moline High School football player in a locker room.”
Chief Gault says detectives have identified “all athletes who were involved in the incident and the circumstances surrounding the video” — and confirmed they are “fellow high school football teammates.”
Cops note the players involved “are also individuals of both different and similar races to the victim.”
“The students directly involved in the video are all friends.”
“Regardless of these facts, we all agree that this is a disgusting way to treat a fellow teammate, a fellow human and most certainly a friend.”
The MPD says the investigation is complete and the case has been submitted to the State’s Attorney for review.
The Moline-Coal Valley School District has also been looped in. District officials slammed the “vile behavior depicted in the video” — insisting it “does not represent our core values and has no place in our learning community.”
The District also vowed to take “decisive action” following an internal investigation.
Originally Published — 6:44 AM PT
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