New video released by Texas Tech University Wednesday morning shows the moment a football player punched a women’s basketball star in the face earlier this year.
The surveillance footage shows Nigel Bethel II strike Amber Battle in the face on June 28 after she allegedly pushed him during a pick-up basketball game. Battle later admitted she “initiated the first contact” and apologized to Bethel.
A Lubbock County Grand Jury on Tuesday opted not to charge Bethel for the violent altercation and on Wednesday the university decided to reinstate him and allow him to rejoin the football program.
“I am thankful for the opportunity to come back to Texas Tech,” Bethel said. “I take full responsibility for my actions and I would like to let everyone know that this won’t happen again. It’s not who I am and I am sorry for the embarrassment this has caused.”
The move came after the grand jury took an extra step of writing to the Texas Tech athletic director making the recommendation.
“We desire to see Mr. Bethel’s scholarship re-instated,” the letter said, according to KCBD. “If he is re-instated, it is our belief that his consequences should not be greater than those of Ms. Battle.”
“This is an unfortunate situation with a unique set of circumstances and there are no winners,” said Kirby Hocutt, Director of Athletics. “Every decision related to this case has been the right one at that particular time based upon our principles, student-athlete code of conduct and team rules.”
“As I continued to work with Coach Kingsbury and Coach Whitaker, we looked at the totality of the situation and have arrived at this decision,” he added. “Two talented young people made a mistake, have shown remorse and learned some very valuable life lessons.”
Bethel will be forced to miss three games of his first season, however, according to the stipulations of his reinstatement, KCBD reported.
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