Veteran linebacker Barkevious Mingo was charged with sexual misconduct with a child on Thursday of last week for an incident that happened in 2019.
In response to the allegations, the Atlanta Falcons terminated Mingo’s contract on Saturday.
However, Mingo’s agent and lawyer Chris Lewis is confident that the claims are false and told ESPN’s Adam Schefter how unhappy he is with how the Falcons handled the situation:
“We are extremely disappointed in the Atlanta Falcons’ rush to judgment in terminating Barkevious Mingo’s contract before gathering all of the relevant facts and prior to my client having his day in court. The accusation against Mr. Mingo is a lie. Barkevious knows it – so does his accuser.
“Mr. Mingo appreciates that law enforcement officers have a tough job to do, and he is fully committed to cooperating with the authorities to clear his name. As soon as Barkevious became aware of the arrest warrant, he immediately travelled to Texas to turn himself in and answer to the charge. Now, he is ready to prove his innocence.
“Mr. Mingo understands the seriousness of an accusation like this and the immediate negative impact it can have on a person’s reputation, even when there is zero evidence. But, he also knows that he will be fully vindicated when the truth comes to light. When that happens, the true motivation of the accuser will be clear and unambiguous.”
The Falcons gave their initial statement Saturday afternoon, just a few hours before they decided to release Mingo.
“Our organization became aware of the allegations involving Barkevious Mingo today and are currently gathering information on this incident. The Falcons take the allegations very seriously and will continue to monitor the situation.”
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Details of the Allegations Made Against Mingo
In a detailed article of the matter published by Jon Wertheim of Sports Illustrated (SI), the alleged incident took place over the July 4th weekend in 2019.
In January of this year, the victim’s mother complained to the Arlington Police Department Crimes Against Children Unit who conducted an investigation.
“Mingo invited a teenage family member and the boy’s friend, also a teenager, to spend the day with him,” Wertheim relayed.
The three spent the day at Six Flags Amusement Park, a go-kart complex and dinner at a Dallas-area steakhouse. Mingo allegedly paid for everything, including a shopping spree on Nike.com.
Then, the trio returned to Mingo’s hotel where the boys were supposed to sleep in separate rooms but that didn’t happen.
The victim told the police he “thought it was odd” when he woke up and found Mingo in bed with him, but didn’t think much of it and went back to sleep.
Here is what allegedly happened next via Sports Illustrated:
“The victim was then woken by [Mingo] pulling at his underwear. This occurred for a few minutes until the suspect got more and aggressive and pulled the victim’s underwear down to his shins. The victim advised that when this was occurring, he was scared and pretended to be asleep. [Mingo] put a lotion on that made the victim’s skin burn and … rubbed his penis up and down, in between the victim’s butt crack.”
Wertheim added that Mingo was released from police custody after posting a $25,000 bond.
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