Olympian Grant Hackett ‘Was Not Aggressive,’ Says Witness; Called Versions of Incident ‘Bizarre’

Grant Hackett

Gary Pert, chief executive of Collingwood Football Club, says that Grant Hackett was “incapacitated” during the flight where a passenger claimed that Hackett assaulted another passenger.

Pert was the key witness to the Hackett plane incident and claimed that the swimmer may have been drinking, says ABC News, as shown by the way he needed help when leaving the plane. The executive was seated across the aisle from Hackett during the flight. He said that despite the swimmer being unhappy with a passenger lowering their seat, Hackett did not harass or assault the other passenger.

Pert added that although he did not know Grant very well, for him he does not appear to be the kind to upset other passengers or be aggressive. Hackett was observed by Pert to have slept during the flight and appeared to have drunk too much and that the worst thing he could do to the passenger before him was to tap him before sitting back and going to sleep.

The swimmer was held for questioning by the Australian Federal Police Officers in Melbourne airport following their flight and was released without charges.

Pert added that he was with Grant Hackett while waiting for the police and he helped the swimmer in getting off the plane. He said that Hackett could have drunk even before he boarded the plane and was not in a condition to harass people.

The unnamed passenger claimed that he was sexually assaulted by Hackett and that he plans to file charges since he felt “unsafe and violated’ by yanking his chair back and tweaking his nipple “quite forcefully,” NineMSN reported.

The swimmer, ABC News said, did not make it to the Rio Olympics last week, announcing retirement for the second time. Hackett is known to have three Olympic gold medals to his name.

He spent the week at the National Swimming Championships after which he joined in an Adelaide Crows event last night.

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