Joe Mixon, friends made 'catcalls,' victim said in 2014 police interview

ByJake Trotter ESPN logo
Friday, February 10, 2017

The woman punched by formerOklahomarunning back and NFL draft hopeful Joe Mixontold police in 2014 that the confrontation began after Mixon and a group of friends made unwanted sexual advances toward her. She said the incident escalated after Mixon called her friend a gay slur.

In a video of her interview with Norman police that the department released Thursday, Amelia Molitor gave her side of the story.

Molitor said she never called Mixon a racial slur during the altercation and was "hurt" that she was "being made out to be a racist."

After the punch, which broke several bones in Molitor's face, Mixon was charged with a misdemeanor, and Oklahoma suspended him for the entire 2014 season. He returned to help lead the Sooners to back-to-back Big 12 titles before declaring for the NFL draft last month.

Mixon's attorney Blake Johnson said his client "categorically denies that he verbally harassed" Molitor.

"Her claim to this effect is contradicted by accounts that were provided to investigators shortly after the incident by several eyewitnesses outside the restaurant," Johnson said in a statement. "In her police interview, Ms. Molitor herself admits her memories of the night are hazy and scattered. Eyewitnesses report that Ms. Molitor was belligerent and apparently inebriated."

"The statements from these witnesses about what occurred are also consistent with what Joe reported to the police and has always maintained," Johnson added. "Joe's report of what was said and occurred is corroborated by others and is simply more credible."

Molitor's attorney declined comment when reached by ESPN.

Mixon apologized in December, when video of the incident was released, saying in his first public comments about it that it was "never, never OK to retaliate and hit a woman the way I did."

As part of a formal apology thathe issued a month earliervia written statement, he said "drunk people started harassing" him and that "racial slurs" initiated the incident.

Molitor gave a different account to Norman Police Detective David Freudiger in the video released Thursday.

She said she was smoking a cigarette with a friend outside of Pickleman's sandwich shop near campus, where another friend was using a bathroom, when Mixon and friends began harassing her.

"They were like making catcalls at me, commenting on how I looked," she said. "They were talking about Joe, I suppose -- I didn't know who he was -- like, 'It's my boy's birthday, like, what are you going to do for him?' Suggesting I go home with him, making very specific suggestions about what I could do to pleasure him.

"My first reaction was to laugh."

Molitor, however, said she began to get mad after Mixon directed a gay slur to her friend.

"When I said I would never in a million years go anywhere with you, he goes, 'Oh, so you'd rather go home with that f---ing f----t?'" Molitor said. "I got really mad, so I faced Joe and was like, 'Don't f--- with me. Do not mess with my friend. Just stop. Go away.' And he was like, 'Oh, you're a bad b----, what are you going to do about it?'"

Molitor said she grabbed her friend and went inside Pickleman's, because she said she "felt like they actually would harm us."

Surveillance video showed Mixon walked in behind Molitor and confronted her at her table. Mixon then turned away, but he appeared to say something to Molitor's friend. Molitor pushed Mixon. He lunged at her. She slapped him. Then he punched her, which caused her face to slam back into a table.

Molitor said that because of the punch, she couldn't recall much of what happened inside Pickleman's.

"It was like I got hit by a train," Molitor said. "And then black. I regained consciousness and there was blood all over the floor."

In his interview with police, Mixon said Molitor "was just being disrespectful ... smoking in my face and acting crazy."

In the police interview, Mixon also accused Molitor's friend -- not Molitor -- of calling him a racial slur.

"Once the dude called me the n-----, I mean, it pretty much got my, you know, thoughts off of the whole situation," he said.

After her account of the incident, Freudiger told Molitor that her version was in "direct conflict with 10 or 12 written statements that I have about what happened."

"I can tell you six people out on that sidewalk at least want me to believe that this all started over cigarette smoke," he said. "And that they were perfect angels about it and very politely tried to correct the situation where they were around some secondhand smoke, and none of this other stuff."

Freudiger, however, said that, in his opinion, Molitor's "explanation of what happened" seemed "much more reasonable."

The detective also brought up the accusation of her calling Mixon a racial slur but said, "Almost everyone says that you did not use a racial slur."

"I wouldn't have remembered if I did, but I know in my heart that I would not have done that, no matter how angry I was," Molitor said. "That's just not something that I would ever do. ... The color of skin had absolutely nothing to do with what was going on."