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PRUITT HAS CONVERSATION WITH UT POLICE OFFICER REGARDING FOOTBALL PLAYER

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U.T. Police Department body camera video shows Tennessee Vols head football coach Jeremy Pruitt’s conversation with an officer after linebacker Jeremy Banks’ arrest.

A UTPD officer pulled over Banks Sunday for making an illegal U-turn at Volunteer and Lake Loudoun boulevards.

Banks had an outstanding warrant for failure to appear in Knox County court. In the body cam footage, Banks admits to having a suspended license. Court documents show Banks was cited for driving on a suspended license July 17.

Banks was handcuffed and put in the back of a patrol car. During that time, Banks called Pruitt.

Pruitt said to Banks, “I thought you paid for that ticket.”

Below is a portion of Pruitt’s conversation with the UTPD officer:

OFFICER:

THAT’S WHERE WE’RE AT NOW.

PRUITT:

SO WHY DO YOU ALL … WHY … I MEAN, WHY DO YOU HAVE TO ARREST HIM? JUST BECAUSE HE’S GOT A WARRANT?

OFFICER:

BECAUSE THAT’S … THE STATE OF TENNESSEE IS THE ONE WHO ISSUED THE WARRANT SO I HAVE TO TAKE HIM IN FOR THAT WARRANT. I HAVE … LIKE I SAY I HAVE NO CHOICE ABOUT THAT. IF IT WAS JUST A SUSPENDED LICENSE I CAN HAVE DISCRETION ON THAT, BUT SINCE THERE IS A WARRANT OUT FOR HIS ARREST I HAVE NO DISCRETION ON THAT.

PRUITT:

DOES IT SAY WHEN THE WARRANT WAS ISSUED?

OFFICER:

NAH .. NO SIR. IT JUST SAYS THAT THERE IS A WARRANT FOR HIS ARREST.

PRUITT:

THIS IS THE SILLIEST **** I’VE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE … I GOT IT, I UNDERSTAND. I’VE WORKED AT 4 PLACES THEY NEVER HAD NO CRAP LIKE THIS EXCEPT FOR HERE BECAUSE THE PEOPLE USUALLY SAY, ‘HEY, SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT HERE.’

OFFICER:

LIKE I SAID SIR I DON’T KNOW IF THEY SENT HIM NOTIFICATION. USUALLY THEY WILL SEND NOTIFICATION OR WHATEVER WHEN HE IS SUPPOSED TO APPEAR IN COURT ON THE TICKET. IF HE DOES NOT APPEAR IN COURT THEY WILL PUT A WARRANT FOR YOUR ARREST. I DON’T KNOW WHAT TICKET …

PRUITT:

I GET THAT. I GET … I UNDERSTAND THAT, ALRIGHT. BUT SOME OF THESE KIDS, THEY DON’T HAVE NOBODY AT HOME TO TEACH THEM HOW TO DO STUFF SO IF SOMETHING HAPPENS PEOPLE NOTIFY SO YOU CAN TEACH THEM HOW TO DO IT. SO … I GET IT. KIDS GOT TO LEAD HIS WHOLE LIFE. GO AHEAD. DO YOUR CIVIC DUTY MAN.

OFFICER:

I APPRECIATE IT COACH.

In a statement released yesterday, Pruitt said: “Jeremy’s behavior and comments are unacceptable and portrayed himself and our football program very poorly and he understands that. We will address the matter internally. I’m determined to do what I can to help Jeremy grow up and become a better man. Our team and staff respect our law enforcement and we will continue to educate our players on how to carry themselves at all times.”

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