MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Nike announced Wednesday that it would be suspending its contract with Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson in light of his recent child abuse charges.
“Nike in no way condones child abuse or domestic violence of any kind and has shared our concerns with the NFL,” a press representative for the company said.
Also, Target confirmed that stores were pulling Peterson merchandise from shelves on Wednesday, as well as on the retailer’s website. A spokesperson said the decision was made taking into account the feedback they had been hearing from guests.
Dick’s Sporting Goods and Sports Authority said that they were also pulling Peterson jerseys from their websites and store shelves.
Peterson is accused of abusing his 4-year-old son after he spanked him with a wooden switch last May, according to a police report.
On Tuesday, a number of Nike stores at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Eagan and at an outlet mall in Albertville pulled Peterson merchandise. Until today, though, Nike was saying: “Adrian Peterson remains a Nike athlete. His product continues to be available for purchase at Nike retail destinations.”
A number of other sponsors and partners have announced they would be suspending their agreements with Peterson as the fallout continues from last Friday’s indictment.
Radisson Hotels suspended its local sponsorship deal with the Vikings following the team’s initial decision to reinstate Peterson; the chain’s logo was on the backdrop behind general manager Rick Spielman when he made the controversial announcement.
Castrol Motor Oil terminated its contract with Peterson, and Special Olympics Minnesota said that “in light of the information that has come out…we are abstaining from any engagement with Adrian Peterson at this time.” Earlier this month, the organization announced him as an ambassador for Unified Sports.
And University of Minnesota Children’s Hospitals issued a statement Tuesday saying it’s evaluating its Vikings sponsorship.
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