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An NFL Network report on Friday said that neither the league nor the Chiefs had seen the video of former Kansas City running back Kareem Hunt shoving and kicking a 19-year-old woman in a Cleveland hotel hallway earlier this year until TMZ released it.
Cleveland police also said that they had not seen the surveillance footage of the incident until TMZ released it, as “detectives only follow up on felonies. This is a misdemeanor.”
Many find it unusual that TMZ obtained the video while the NFL couldn’t.
According to a report from The Athletic on Saturday, the Chiefs knew that this video existed and repeatedly attempted to obtain it. The team, though, was “told by the NFL to stop pursuing it later in February once the league began its investigation.”
Chiefs maintain Hunt continued to lie
While the Chiefs said they quit looking for the video, due to the NFL’s instruction, they apparently didn’t take their eyes off of Hunt. They reportedly asked him multiple times since February to be truthful about the incident.
“I never left the room,” Hunt told the Chiefs each time, per The Athletic. “I didn’t do a thing.”
When the video surfaced, the Chiefs cut him largely because he was “not truthful.”
“As part of our internal discussions with Kareem, several members of our management team spoke directly to him,” the Chiefs said in their statement releasing Hunt. “Kareem was not truthful in those discussions. The video today confirms that.”
Had he been truthful about the incident, the Chiefs “would have pursued every option available to them through the league to ensure the possibility of him remaining on the team’s roster,” according to The Athletic.
Hunt’s emotional departure from Kansas City
The Chiefs sent Hunt home shortly after the video surfaced on Friday. Hours later, he was called back to the team facility. There, according to The Athletic, Hunt “cried in front of his coaches and members of the front office.” He reportedly pleaded for them to reconsider their decision to release him with “trembling emotion in his voice.”
“It really felt like a funeral,” a source told The Athletic.
While the Chiefs reportedly told Hunt that he’ll never play in their uniform again, they did tell him they want him to keep getting counseling. The Chiefs called the NFL twice on Friday to “express their desire to have Hunt enrolled in a new counseling program through the league,” according to the report.
“The belief is that he’ll get help,” a source told The Athletic. “I do think he’ll get it. This is a guy I believe can figure it out. This will be tough for a while.”
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