November 19, 2018 at 3:29 pm EST | by Mariah Cooper
Rugby player Gareth Thomas reveals he was victim of homophobic attack

Gareth Thomas (Screenshot via Twitter)

Former Welsh rugby player Gareth Thomas revealed he was the victim of a homophobic attack in Cardiff in a video posted on Twitter on Sunday.

Thomas, 44, came out as gay in 2009 making him the first out professional rugby union player. He retired from the sport in 2011.

In the video, Thomas addresses the camera with cuts on his face.

“Last night I was a victim in my home city of a hate crime for my sexuality,” Thomas says.”Why I want it to be positive, is because I want to say thank you to the police who were involved and were very helpful and allowed me to do restorative justice with the people who did this, because I thought they could learn more that way than any other way.”

“Also to the people of Cardiff who supported me and helped me, because there are a lot of people out there who want to hurt us, but unfortunately for them there are a lot more who want to help us heal, so this I hope will be a positive message,” he concluded.

According to the Mirror, South Wales Police have confirmed a 16-year-old, who has not been named, admitted to the incident and has apologized. As per Thomas’ request, the youth faced consequences through restorative justice.

“Restorative justice is about putting victim needs at the centre of the criminal justice system, finding positive solutions to crime and encouraging young people to be accountable for the consequences of their actions,” South Wales Police said in a statement.”Hate crime has no place in society and has always been a priority for South Wales Police.”

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