Fri. Nov 15th, 2019

Kansas Daily News

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Pooka Williams Rejoins His Team but Misses the First Game

3 min read
Pooka Williams Rejoins His Team

In December 2018, the 19-year-old KU football player was arrested following a physical altercation with an 18-year-old female student. He pleaded not guilty and received a seven-month-long team suspension. This week, KU Athletics has announced the running back’s return to the KU Jayhawks. This will happen after a one-game suspension as a result of his actions.

This year in March, the Kansas sophomore has signed a 12-month diversion agreement with the Douglas County District Attorney’s office. If he completes the program, the domestic battery charge will be dropped.

KU Athletics revealed that the university has also been investigating the charge against Williams and has decided to give further sanctions. The suspended football player has allowed his school to reveal the punishments.

Williams will be under probation until his graduation. Additionally, he will have to meet a university conduct officer every month. He is also required to provide 40 hours of community service and to take a course about sexual violence accountability.

Jeff Long, KU Athletic director, has stated that Pooka’s conduct from the last December was unacceptable in any community, and especially at Kansas University. He continued by pointing out Williams’ suspension from the football program as soon as the allegations were made. The athlete has remained suspended for the past seven months, but he is coming back on the field.

Long said that Pooka had followed all the instructions that the courts, Kansas Athletics, and the university had given him. Most importantly, the director highlighted, Williams has taken responsibility for his previous actions.

Jeff Long added that Kansas Athletics would resume their educational efforts when it comes to Williams and all other Kansas student-athletes. He pointed out that these young people are representatives of the university, and there are certain expectations of them.

The Terms of the Agreement

Williams’ diversion agreement from March came with several terms. Pooka has agreed to be subject to an assessment of domestic violence offenders and to complete an anger management course before the end of November. He also has to refrain from drug use and alcohol during the 12-month period.

Williams cannot contact the victim, and he needs to finish forty hours of community service. Finally, he has to pay the court costs amounting to $158.

Williams’ Response

The football player has made an official statement regarding his suspension. He apologized to anyone impacted by his “unacceptable behavior” and pointed out how disappointed he is in himself. Williams stated that the suspension has been difficult, but it has also taught him a lot.

Coach’s Comments

The Kansas University coach, Les Miles, has added that the team is happy to have Pooka back. The coach said that the young man has taken responsibility and learned much during this process. He concluded by saying that the team will offer support to Pooka as he keeps working through the necessary accountability and educational steps.

2018 Domestic Battery Charge

The domestic violence charge against Williams was the result of an incident involving him and a female student. On December 6, the woman filed a report against Pooka stating he grabbed her by the throat and punched her in the stomach. According to the arrest affidavit, the victim’s arms and side were bruised. Both she and Williams stated that they were in a relationship.

The football player signed a statement admitting to the accusation. The stipulation of facts said that Williams confronted the victim at her friend’s apartment. He accused the victim of cheating on him, grabbed her, and pushed her. Other people present during the argument tried to separate him from her.

Opener Without Pooka

The season-opening game will take place on the last day of August when KU will take on Indiana State. According to the Monday announcement, Williams will not be a part of this match.

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