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Chris Kluwe Identifies Witnesses in Homophobia Claims Against Vikings Official

Back in January Chris Kluwe wrote a piece on Deadspin accusing the Vikings organization of releasing him for his anti-gay activism and said that he was fired by special-teams coordinator Mike Priefer, a "bigot", who said, very serious, in front of other teammates, "We should round up all the gays, send them to an island, and then nuke it until it glows."

KluweKluwe's accusations prompted an investigation and the former punter and his lawer Clayton Halunen spoke for five hours with investigators on Friday and named two players said to be witnesses to Priefer's remarks, Pioneer Press reports:

In a five-hour meeting Friday with investigators, Halunen said Kluwe identified [kicker Blair] Walsh and long snapper Cullen Loeffler as witnesses to Priefer allegedly making homophobic comments numerous times during the 2012 season in meetings with the punter, kicker and long snapper, and that Pico was told about it after the fact. Halunen noted that Kluwe told investigators he is willing to take a polygraph test.

Walsh issued a statement through the Vikings on Jan. 2 in defense of Priefer. But Halunen said Kluwe retained text messages in which Walsh referenced what Priefer allegedly said, including a text related to Priefer allegedly saying, "We should round up all the gays, send them to an island, and then nuke it until it glows."

"If Walsh is going to lie, this will all be exposed, I'm confident,'' Halunen said. "If Walsh is going to lie, that's his choice. But at the end of the day, we believe this is going to come out. We have evidence. So he made that choice, I guess.''

PrieferWalsh did not specifically say Priefer (right) did not make the remarks but testified to his "integrity and character" in his statement, according to the paper.

Halunen "believes the Vikings will end up contending that what Priefer said was a joke" and Kluwe will likely sue if Walsh Loeffler, and director of player personnel Les Pico lie during the investigation:

Halunen said if Walsh, Loeffler and Pico deny during the investigation having knowledge of Priefer's alleged homophobic remarks, Kluwe would consider legal action due to his client wanting to protect his integrity. Halunen said the three then would be under oath, unlike during the investigation.

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  1. Wow....intense fighter. I sure hope Kluwe can produce and show the phobes that there's no place to hide.

    Posted by: woodroad34 | Jan 26, 2014 4:56:14 PM

  2. Andy, when you refer to Chris Kluwe's 'anti-gay activism', it communicates that he is an activist who opposes homosexuality. It would be more accurate to say:

    "Back in January Chris Kluwe wrote a piece on Deadspin accusing the Vikings organization of releasing him because of his activism in support of marriage equality."

    Posted by: peterparker | Jan 26, 2014 5:02:09 PM

  3. I'm glad he metioned he would take a lie test. I would like him to challenge Priefer to take a pollygraph test also... and the loser would have to pay for both test and give $10,000 winnings to the person telling the truth go to their favorite charity. That way it will show he's not doing it for the money. I had a situation where my ideas to a S.F. Jeweler who used them and said I did not give it to him. Those idea's are now in the Smithsonian. And of course the Jeweler did not accept my challenge. At that time the amount I mentioned was only $100. I have a copy of the mailgram to show my challenge. I realize lie-test are not admissible in a court of law... However it is a good way to check their oil!

    Posted by: jerry pritikin the Bleacher Preacher | Jan 26, 2014 5:36:57 PM

  4. Halunen "believes the Vikings will end up contending that what Priefer said was a joke"

    So now they admit he said it. After first denying that he said it, and falling back on the 'I have gay friends/family' lie, they now want to pretend that passing it off as a joke somehow makes it excusable.

    Does the NFL permit ANY incendiary language as long as it's claimed as a joke? Say anything you like and follow it up with 'ha, ha, just kidding' even if that part doesn't come up until a year later when it's revealed? Know what really funny ... that Priefer completely forgot the 'just kidding' part until the investigation came up, even after holding a press conference where he 'vehemently denied' saying it. You still have that statement where he denied saying it right?

    Is this the worth of your integrity Mr Wilf? Mr Magnuson?

    Posted by: SERIOUSLY | Jan 26, 2014 5:42:11 PM

  5. Someone should ask Priefer if his little 'joke' would be as funny if he had said jews instead of gays.

    Posted by: David | Jan 26, 2014 5:54:02 PM

  6. @seriously

    They're not admitting anything. Halunen is Kluwe's lawyer, and he's just speculating that eventually the Vikings will say that the comments were just a joke. At this stage the Vikings are denying the comments were made.

    Posted by: Brian1 | Jan 26, 2014 7:19:09 PM

  7. Well, sure. A man can advocate genocide without it being considered a blight on his integrity and character, can't he?

    I mean, this is still America, isn't it?

    Take'm to the cleaners, Kluwe!

    Posted by: FFS | Jan 26, 2014 7:57:14 PM

  8. Ah. It was JOKE. Because mass murder is HILARIOUS! I'd have more respect if he'd just admit he said it and apologize.

    Posted by: Houndentenor | Jan 26, 2014 8:10:50 PM

  9. Well, maybe the Vikings can just fire Priefer. As a joke.

    Posted by: HA HA! | Jan 26, 2014 8:23:51 PM

  10. "Back in January." It IS January. Sloppy.

    Posted by: Ray Ivey | Jan 26, 2014 9:22:24 PM

  11. "Back in January." It IS January. Sloppy.

    Posted by: Ray Ivey | Jan 26, 2014 9:22:24 PM

  12. @Brain1 when did they deny that specific comment was made?

    Posted by: Kim | Jan 26, 2014 9:35:13 PM

  13. We can go into greater detail & discussion if you want but at this point any way you look at this there's no good reason for Halunen to suggest this speculative excuse of 'joking' unless there was something that substantiated it in the interviews. Eyewitness. Pico. Spielman.

    Priefer made anti-gay hate rants several times. Kluwe made complaints to Pico. What was done about those complaints and by whom? Kluwe has text messages about Priefer's anti-gay rants. There's no longer a viable denial that they were said. Now the prior deniers are offering up what they deem as plausible excuses for why they were said. 'Just a joke'

    The larger issue is that they were said, covered up, and then Kluwe was fired. It goes to the heart of the pervasiveness of LGBT bigotry and acceptance of that bigotry in this team's coaching & management and quite possibly in the entire NFL.

    Posted by: SERIOUSLY | Jan 27, 2014 12:21:03 AM

  14. @kim

    From Priefer the day Kluwe made his allegations: "I vehemently deny today's allegations made by Chris Kluwe.I want to be clear that I do not tolerate discrimination of any type and am respectful of all individuals. I personally have gay family members who I love and support just as I do any family member."


    Sorry but I'm just not understanding your point. You're just repeating Kluwe's lawyer's case, which I totally agree with. I just don't think you're understanding that all of this is coming from Halunen, Kluwe's lawyer. You're quoting him like he's a representative of the Vikings, which he's not. Halunen saying that he thinks at some point the Vikings will admit these things were said but try to pass it off as a joke is most likely what will happen. It makes perfect sense to me. But it's nothing like an admission from the Vikings or Priefer that this was said but it was a joke. It's like when a defence lawyer says he thinks the police framed his client. It means just that, the defence lawyer thinks it. It doesn't mean the police admitted it, or told him they did it or anything of the sort.

    Posted by: Brian1 | Jan 27, 2014 3:26:48 AM

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