After racist video filmed by Moline High School football players in Illinois went viral, the Black teen who was the subject of the video released a statement that showed a remarkable tone of forgiveness, the Quad City Times reports.
In the video, which surfaced on Friday, team members can be heard cheering when the teen is told to sit in a locker that has bananas hanging in it.
"I want to make it known that I'm fine. Everyone is worried about me and showing concern for me and I really appreciate it. Second, can everyone please stop talking about the incident and video? I understand everyone wants justice for me and they want what they think is right to be done, but I already made my feelings known to the police and my friends about how I feel about everything," the teen's statement read.
"I love the football team I'm on and they're good guys. I know that personally. I talked to the people involved individually and they apologized. We had a heartfelt talk about it and I told them how I felt," the unidentified teen continued. "So please don't harass, bully, or threaten them at all. Lastly, I want to get my life back together, and my student-athlete life back on track, so if you do ever see me or know who I am, treat me as a human first, not a victim."
The Moline Police and the Moline-Coal Valley School District are both separately investigating the incident.
"We all agree that regardless if the students viewed this as a joke, it is unacceptable behavior," said Moline Chief of Police Darren Gault. "This is a teaching moment for everyone and a reminder that we can do better. We can treat people better. We can be better friends. We can be better teammates. We can be better people."