Out pro wrestler Jake Atlas issued his first public statement since his arrest for domestic violence in May, apologizing to “colleagues and fans” for his “wrongdoing and any hurt, disappointment and complications I may have caused.”
Released via Atlas’ Twitter account on Friday, the former WWE and AEW star admitted to his abuse of alcohol, which factored heavily into the altercation with his male partner that resulted in his arrest and being charged with misdemeanor battery domestic violence on May 23. According to TMZ, the charge was dropped in June after Orange County, Florida, prosecutors deemed the case “not suitable for prosecution.”
Atlas, whose real name Kenny Marquez and who is gay, also spoke about his mental health struggles, a major factor in his stepping away from pro wrestling briefly last Fall before joining AEW in January and how they influenced his alcohol abuse.
“I have accepted that my anxiety and depression led me to detrimentally self-medicate for the last seven years,” Atlas said. “In addition, a lot of unresolved trauma resurfaced for me recently that was fundamental to the development of some extremely negative core beliefs and I was inadequately able to manage.”
He addressed his arrest in the statement as well, calling it an incident he is “100% not proud of” and a “terrible mistake.”
“I take full responsibility and accountability for the situation and my actions,” Atlas said. “I recognize that the state of being intoxicated does not excuse my behavior. I made a terrible mistake. I hurt people I love and it’s something I deeply regret.”
Atlas went on the say that his relationship with his partner (it is unknown if Atlas and his partner are still together) “is not abusive in any way, shape or form” and that the incident “is certainly not a reflection of my character.”
“One can read a report and choose to take the information for what it is, but to speculate, draw conclusions and create a narrative that has no merit only adds further damage to those involved,” Atlas said. “This was a situation that was already being and continues to be dealt with privately.”
Atlas’ partner (whose name Outsports has withheld) has not spoken publicly about the May 23 incident, Atlas’ arrest or his relationship with Atlas.
Atlas revealed that he has been seeking treatment for both his substance abuse and mental health issues in the time since the arrest. The wrestler claimed that he completed an outpatient program, calling it “a phenomenal first step in my recovery,” and plans to continue treatment going forward.
“I am human and that makes me flawed. I believe in second chances, I believe in redemption, and in turn, I believe in personal growth,” Atlas said. “I have made exceptional progress and I am excited for the future. I have full faith for a positive outcome from this journey as I continue my sobriety and the process of healing with the support of my friends, my family and my partner.”