Paddy Jackson makes first statement since rape trial: 'Criticism of my behaviour is justified'
Paddy Jackson has come out with a statement this afternoon, apologising for his actions.
It has been a week and two days since former rugby player Paddy Jackson was found not guilty of rape.
In the days since, he has been condemned for his actions, which including degrading WhatsApp messages, and he has now apologised for them, saying that he let down his family, as well as the wider public.
In a statement to Press Association, he said: "I am ashamed that a young woman who was a visitor to my home left in a distressed state. This was never my intention and I will always regret the events of that evening.
"I am also truly sorry for engaging in a WhatsApp group chat which was degrading and offensive and I apologise unreservedly for this.
"The criticism of my behaviour is fully justified and I know I have betrayed the values of my family and those of the wider public.
"Following the trial I have taken time to reflect with my family on the values that were such an integral part of my upbringing, the most important of which is respect. My departure from these values has caused understandable public anger and I am resolutely committed to returning to those principles."
Several petitions have been signed by almost 70,000 people for Jackson and Stuart Olding to be reviewed by the IRFU.
However, both men have expressed a desire to return to playing rugby for the country.