Tennessee lineman Darel Middleton issues apology following arrest

Middleton faces charges of domestic assault and public intoxication. / (KPD)
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Tennessee defensive lineman Darel Middleton took to Twitter to issue an apology following his arrest over the weekend.

Middleton was arrested on charges of domestic assault and public intoxication after a reported incident involving his girlfriend Saturday.

Middleton, a rising senior, posted a long note addressing his arrest and the incident.

Middleton began by saying he's "not looking for sympathy," and added the incident "wasn't me."

"I want to apologize to the university and our football program as we continue to rise. For the embarrassment," Middleton wrote. "In my growth, I am learning to take responsibility for my actions."

Middleton added that he is seeking help with alcohol counseling.

Police said they responded to the alley behind Walgreen's on Cumberland Ave. after receiving a call that a man had reportedly assaulted a female around 2:45 a.m. Dispatch said the female was allegedly screaming for her life.

When officers arrived on the scene, they were unable to locate the individuals involved in the incident. Police said they were flagged down by a witness who said the suspect was standing inside the nearby Standard Apartments.

Police located Middleton and said he was unsteady on his feet and unable to keep his balance.

According to police reports, Middleton had a strong smell of alcohol on his breath, bloodshot eyes and slurred speech. While talking to Middleton, officers said they found the victim who was crying and appeared to be in fear.

A witness told officers Middleton was reportedly upset with the victim, his girlfriend, over one of her guy friends. Both the witness and victim told police Middleton became angry and began beating up one of his friends.

According to reports, Middleton shoved the victim to the ground when she tried to stop him from fighting. Officers said Middleton helped his girlfriend up, apologized and hugged her. The witness told police she tried to get Middleton to let his girlfriend go when he pushed his girlfriend to the ground for a second time.

Middleton was arrested and faces charges of domestic assault and public intoxication. Tennessee officials said they are aware of the incident and are looking into it.

Middleton played in all 13 games in 2019 recording 28 tackles, 2 for loss and a sack.

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