U.S. Military Statement on Suspended Player

Former West Point Cadet Richard King joined us on the show today to discuss the lawsuit hes filed against R&B singer Patti LaBelle.

His suit stems from an altercation that took place March 11th at Houstons Bush Intercontinental Airport.

King, just beginning his spring break from West Point, was standing in the arrivals area outside the airport giving his brother directions via cell phone regarding where to meet.

Surveillance video shows LaBelles limo arriving as King is on the phone; he claims the singer ordered her 3 bodyguards to beat him up because she didnt like him standing so close to her luggage.

King was a starting defensive back on the Army football team, but says he can never play football again due to head injuries inflicted on him during the fight, when his head slammed into a concrete pillar.

The video captured by Houston Airport surveillance and released by Kings attorney – shows LaBelle’s bodyguards over King and then moving away while King tries unsuccessfully to stand. Houston Police arrive to help and the bloody, bandaged King is placed in an ambulance. Houston Police then take photos with LaBelle.

In the police report King is named as the suspect. LaBelle’s bodyguard is quoted as telling the police that King was intoxicated and took the first swing after being asked to step back from the luggage. LaBelle was not available for comment when we reached out to her today.

After the fight, West Point investigated the incident and separated (suspended) King from the Academy. Hes eligible to apply for re-admission if he successfully completes 18 months on active duty as a soldier.

We received the statement from the U.S. Military Academy.


U.S. Military Academy Statement

from Lt. Col. Sherri Reed, Director of Public Affairs

June 8

“The U.S. Military Academy completed a thorough investigation regarding the incident that occurred at the Houston Airport on March 11, 2011, involving Cadet Richard King. Following this investigation, the Academy chain of command took appropriate administrative action in accordance with Army Regulation 210-26.

At this time, the specific details of Cadet King’s case are protected by the Privacy Act, and are therefore not releasable.

Cadets who are placed on a suspended separation status (similar to probation in the civilian judicial system) for an honor violation or an act of misconduct are required to meet a number of conditions in order to continue at the Academy. Failure to meet this condition results in separation from the Academy.

Cadets who are separated from the Academy after the beginning of their junior year are typically obligated to either pay back the cost of their education or serve on active duty as a specialist (E-4) in the Army for a period of three years.

Additionally, the Superintendent may recommend separated cadets to participate in the Academy Mentorship Program. A cadet who participates in the AMP may apply for readmission to the Academy after serving eight to twelve months of active duty service. The decision regarding readmission is based on their complete record at West Point and successful performance as a Soldier while on enlisted duty.

West Point trains, educates, and inspires future leaders of the U.S. Army and Nation, in keeping with the highest traditions of professional military service.”