Reporting Esme Murphy
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota Vikings CB Chris Cook took the stand in his own defense Tuesday, describing a violent confrontation with his girlfriend.
The Vikings former first-round draft pick testified that he acted in self-defense after his girlfriend hit him.
Cook said his girlfriend, Chantel Baker, became infuriated when he got a lap dance at a strip club and the argument escalated from there.
Cook was calm as he described a night on the town that spun out of control. Cook, Baker and two friends went to a strip club, which was then called Sheiks.
Cook purchased lap dances for his friends and his girlfriend.
He testified that his girlfriend became enraged because she thought his lap dance lasted too long.
Cook said the girlfriend then began texting her old boyfriend.
Back at Cook’s home, he said Baker became violent, threw a lamp and then hit him in the head with an object when his back was turned.
Cook said, “I spun around and slapped her. I thought she was going to hit me again.”
He went on to say that his girlfriend pulled out three of his dreadlocks.
“It was some of the worst pain I had ever felt. I’ve never had my hair pulled out before,” he said.
Cook said in addition to slapping her, he also pushed her twice, down onto the bed.
The most serious charge against Cook alleges that he strangled her but Cook denied ever doing that.
The girlfriend initallly told first responders Cook choked her but three weeks later, she changed her story.
Last week, she testified under oath, he did not strangle her.
The case will come down to which story the jury believes and how convincing Cook’s testimony was.