Tyreek Hill spoke for the first time about the allegations surrounding him after Chiefs training camp Sunday.
The receiver apologized for the way he spoke to his ex-fiancee Crystal Espinal on a leaked recording, in which he said she should be afraid of him, but added he never abused their son.
Hill said he wanted to “man up” for the language he used in the audio, which he said he didn’t know of until it was released in April.
“I don’t want nobody talking to my little sister, my daughter that I have now, my mom like that. It’s very disrespectful,” Hill said. “I mean, my mom got onto me, like she thumped me in the ear, like, Come on, man, Reek. Come on, grow up, grow up out of it. So, never again. Like I said I’m growing as a human being, as a person. Never again.”
“Punching my son in the chest would probably refer to me teaching my son how to box, cause we do have boxing gloves at our house…” [@ftbeard_17]
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) July 28, 2019
Hill was under investigation both by the police and NFL over the allegations that he broke his 3-year-old son’s arm by hitting him, along with allegations that he beat the boy with a belt. Espinal secretly recorded her confronting Hill, saying their son was “terrified” of him.
He also addressed the part of the recording where he thumped his son in the chest, saying that he was teaching the child to box and pushed him on the chest to practice.
“Punching my son in (his) chest. That would probably refer to me teaching my son how to box,” Hill said. “Because we do got boxing gloves at our house.”
He added that the boy likes to pretend to be Iron Man and that he loves to roughhouse.
Prosecutors still have a case open against Hill, but it’s considered inactive. The NFL decided not to punish him further, clearing him to play at the beginning of the season. However, the league said it didn’t have full access to law enforcement’s records and said it was still monitoring the case.
Hill said that he is excited for the future and reiterated that he that he has grown from his experience.
“I can’t wait for my new journey, man. I’m excited,” he said. “I’m working every day to be a better father, better person, better citizen, a better son, too, to my parents. One thing stood out to me, my mom, as I was going through this long process, my mom told me, people don’t need to change, they need to grow. When you think about it, a tree changes and a tree grows every day.
“My mom kept telling me ‘Reek, you need to grow. You need to add layers to yourself because if a tree grows, it doesn’t go back.’ So, I don’t want to go back. I want to grow every day of my life.”