The viral video that surfaced Tuesday of a Venezuelan-born minor-league baseball player repeatedly striking his then-girlfriend in August 2016 has drawn widespread condemnation on social media and immediately prompted the player’s team to release him.
After an open records request, police in Corpus Christi, Texas, released the surveillance video to local NBC affiliate KRIS 6 News. Minor-league outfielder Danry Vasquez is seen hitting and pulling the hair of Fabiana Perez in a stadium stairwell — footage that generated hundreds of thousands of views on video platforms.
Both Vasquez and Perez spoke with media after the video was made public.
Vasquez, 24, was interviewed Thursday by KRIS 6 News about the incident which took place when he played for the Corpus Christi Hooks, a minor-league affiliate of the Houston Astros.
“It was something that happened too fast. And I am really sorry. I’m afraid this will end my career,” Vasquez said.
Major League Baseball had suspended Vasquez indefinitely and he was later released by the Astros after his arrest on a misdemeanor assault family violence charge. Vasquez later joined the Lancaster Barnstormers, an independent minor-league team in Pennsylvania. The team cut him Tuesday after the video went public.
“This incident happened almost two years ago,” Vasquez told Spanish outlet El Emergente on Wednesday. “I’ve truly changed. I’m engaging in activities that have helped me change. I’ve matured as a person and I know what I did, or at least what was seen, which shouldn’t be seen as an example or anything that can be amended.”
Vasquez admitted that the images in the video were hard to watch. He is seen backhanding Perez three times and pulls her hair while dragging her down a flight of stairs. Vasquez asked for forgiveness for the attack and cited his responsibility has a public figure.
“I understand there will be more backlash and I’m leaving everything in God’s hands,” Vasquez said.
Vasquez and Perez, who was 19 years old at the time of the incident, had reportedly been together for six years and were later engaged. Vasquez has since married another woman.
In an interview Thursday with Univision, Perez expressed regret for not pressing charges against Vasquez at the time.
“Now, when I watch the video, I remember things and I say, ‘How could this have happened, why did I not do anything, why did I not react?'” Perez said.
“If I had the conscience I have now, I would have made another decision,” she said.
— NESN (@NESN) March 14, 2018