A Life Altering Moment

Michael Harris, a sophomore at Eastern Kentucky who transferred from Auburn, was arrested after officers were called about a disturbance at a local business. When officers responded to the call, they tried to deescalate the situation. However, Harris became aggressive. He invaded the officer’s space. As things began to escalate, Harris picked up the officer and body-slammed him to the ground. It took three officers to subdue Harris. Harris was arrested. Alcohol and drugs were thought to have played an influence.

Joe’s Perspective: This was a bad moment that turned into a life-changing event. If Harris had remained calm, he probably would have simply walked away from this incident. He might have even received some help at that moment – maybe a ride or a call to the university. However, he made a poor choice, probably influenced by drugs.

Regardless of the reason, this man will never play football again. Eastern Kentucky University immediately revoked his scholarship. No other college will touch him with a 100 foot pole. He’s too high of a risk. My guess is if you check on his story in 5 years, it will be a trail of regret – a big pile of “if only’s” and “what ifs.”

Please let this serve as a cautionary tale. When in this situation, you have to make the right choice. Don’t let it become a defining moment in your life. Be calm. Communicate.

Your Turn: What are your thoughts on this story? What would you have done differently?

Comments 126

  1. This action was obviously the wrong thing to do you live and learn from things like this. Sad that his college football career is over but it was the right punishment. The thing I don’t like about this though is that we can’t hear everything that was being said. If I was in the position, I would just listen to the officer and just move on with life. But I know that’s easier said than done.

    1. I do think the punishment is reasonable but what he got the cops called on him for was not the big of a deal to call the cops for.

  2. That punishment was reasonable, as he’s representing that college. It shouldn’t have escalated into that, no matter the situation.

  3. In my opinion it doesn’t come down to what you would do in that situation, but instead making decisions that prevent you from even being put in that situation. Even if he had cooperated I’d hope he would still face consequences because of his use of drugs while representing a college sport. In the first place he shouldn’t be risking his scholarship that other kids would kill for, it shows his lack of gratitude and thus through not caring he lost his opportunity.

  4. I admit what he did was wrong but let’s not act like those to wear badge aren’t human and don’t commit any crimes. He made a big mistake taking those drugs and for that he’ll pay.

  5. he shouldn’t have done the drugs are had any alcohol in his system if he knows that he won’t be able to control his actions. he should’ve cooperated and because he did not then he deserve what he got.

  6. I think that this event could have easily been avoided if everyone in the situation would have remained calm. Obviously Michael didn’t keep his composure and he did something that will really mess up his life. But if drugs were a factor, it reminds us that drugs and alcohol won’t bring us any good.

  7. his action was wrong ,if he knew he couldn’t handle something lethal then he should have never done it. He risk his life ,career and it’s all his fault. situation would have gone different if he hasn’t been under the influence

  8. His action was wrong, you should never treat a police officer like that. I would of stayed calm and listen to the cop/officer. His actions ended in him getting arrested and in much bigger trouble than he was initially in.

  9. His action is a bad choice, he might have just ruined his whole life and career and he made a terrible choice. He could have done better if he hadn’t made another bad choice by being under the influence. And this situation could have been much better.

  10. I think that Harris should have stopped and think of the situation he is in and think of the consequences rather than freak out and hurt people. If I was in Harris situation I would have remand calm and listen to the officer.

  11. His actions were wrong, and he shouldn’t have made that choice. But, the thing is, at the time he most likely didn’t process what was happening, and therefore he couldn’t think straight. Had he simply refused to take the drugs and/or alcohol in the first place, he may not have been in this situation.

  12. He chose the wrong decision, and now will regret it. He got what he deserved, even though it is sad. He has a choice over his decisions.

  13. I think he made a bad choice he could have cooperated but ending up ruining his career and future, if he maybe didn’t take drugs or alcohol it could have changed his life.

  14. i dont think anybody should have body slammed a police officer no matter the cause, its just not the right thing to do. communication is key, just talk it out with the officer.

  15. All he had to do was remain calm and keep his composure, and he would have had his whole life ahead of him. instead, he lashed out and destroyed so many opportunities for his future.

  16. I think it’s straight crazy, I don’t see how all those cops couldn’t have taken down one person. I would have been chiller and just skipped away when they were harassing me. It looks like he was being harassed by the police before he did it.

  17. What are your thoughts on this story? What would you have done differently?

    I think that that would be very scary if someone picked you up and slammed you on the ground. I would have justn talked to the officers instead of attacking. Violence is never the answer.

  18. If he would’ve thought what the consequences were to doing this act it would’ve have played out differently. Since Harris didn’t remain calm he got what he deserved to not play football anymore.

  19. He made a wrong choice and he could have done something else but he did not so I think he gets what he deserves. Next time he is put in a place like that he will know not to get mad.

  20. This blog shows how drugs and alcohol and bad choices can mess you up forever. This man had a whole lot of potential, until this moment, if he had just remained calm and listened to the police, and if he had not made these choices, he could have gone into a good college and lived a good life. But he decided to make the situation worse, and what did that bring him to? Nothing, nothing but jail and future problems. Please don’t end up like this man.

  21. I think if he would had cooperated his punishment would not have been as bad but it still does not make it right that he had drugs and alcohol in his system

  22. I think that if he would have not been so aggressive and calmer he would have been given a lighter punishment or none at all but he had drugs and alcohol so he probably couldn’t think strait.

  23. I think that if he would have not been so aggressive and calmer he would have been given a lighter punishment or none at all but he had drugs and alcohol so he probably couldn’t think straight.

  24. He made a poor decision that will leave a permanent mark on him and his future and he can’t undo that, I f he had just stayed calm he could have walked away easily or get some help.

  25. I think that because of what that young man did, his life is now ruined. Not in a sense that he was hurt or lost a loved one, but that he will be able to go anywhere in life.

  26. This is so sad that a bright athlete would succumb to drugs and alcohol to make a decision that has truly changed his life. If he had made better choices he would have had a brighter future ahead of him.

  27. he shouldn’t have done the drugs have had any alcohol in his system if he knows that he won’t be able to control his actions. he should’ve cooperated and because he did not then he deserve what he got

  28. He shouldn’t have done that to the cop. If he had made a different decision that day, ha would probably still be playing, and have a successful career.

  29. i think that he shouldn’t have slammed the police officer and it sucks that he can not play football anymore it was his future and now he doesn’t have a future unless it is in jail.

  30. I would think about what I was doing because if the result of hurting someone made me stop from doing the thing I love, it would tear me apart to not be able to do it anymore.

  31. As said in the article, it will probably lead to a big decision of regret in the future, or just general depression knowing that he could have gone big if he just didn’t go for that one attack. It’s also surprising how it took 3 police to bring down one man. (I don’t know, just adding a small reply.)

  32. I feel like what he did was really wrong and if he cooperated things would’ve been different. He shouldn’t have done what he did

  33. I think it is sad he can’t play anymore but it is his own decision that he has to deal with now. I would not have escalated the situation like he did

  34. I think it is sad he can’t play anymore but it is his own decision that he has to deal with now. I would not have escalated the situation like he did.

  35. he should have never even put himself in that situation knowing he was going to a great school as an athlete. His punishment was reasonable and hopefully he will learn a lesson from it.

  36. I feel as if he just cooperated with the officers then everything would’ve been fine and his career wouldn’t be ruined

  37. As an athlete you have to make sure that your actions are ok for being a role model for others or even younger players looking up to him
    So he should have never put himself in that situation and of all things he should have been calm about it.

  38. He shouldn’t have gotten drunk or did any drugs, especially if your an athlete. The officers were just trying to help him and calm him down but because he was on drugs he ruined his future forever.

  39. I think that the punishment was reasonable, but that instead he should have remained calm and receive the helped that he needed at the time.

  40. he could’ve handled the situation better instead of putting his hands on an officer because many probably look up to him and see him as a role model. besides that, he shouldn’t have gotten involved with the drugs and alcohol because he’s athlete and he’s meant to set standards either way for future generations.

  41. Coming from an student athlete he should of never had drugs in his system or payed his hands on an officer. You should not represent yourself especially as an student athlete like the way he did. When you act like that you represent yourself and who you play for. It’s called bad reflection.

  42. I think he got what he deserved, he’s representing his college and if he knew that he wouldn’t be able to cooperate if he had the drugs or alcohol in his system then he deserved to have his scholarship revoked.

  43. it’s sad that his career is ruined but he messed it up himself. You gotta think before you do. it’s as simple as that.

  44. i think it was a reasonable punishment since using drugs isnt okay especially when you are representing your college everywhere you go and we should always think before doing in order to prevent situations from forming or being worse than what they could be

  45. This is why before making a decision its a good idea to think about what it might do to your life but in more short term, your sports career.

  46. Harris’s life was ruined by drugs. This shows that drugs can be a problem and is it worth taking if you risk ruining your life.

  47. as an athlete, younger people are looking up to him and it would have been way easier to stay calm and not to entertain violence.

  48. I feel like he wasn’t thinking right and he didn’t think before acting. His punishment was harsh, but that’s what happens and what he deserved because he should have never been under the influence in the beginning. I feel sympathy for him, throwing away the future like that, but that’s what it is

  49. I feel like he wasn’t thinking right and he didn’t think before acting. Don’t take drugs!! It ruins your life

  50. When you are playing sports at such a high level you need to make sure that you stay out of trouble. A lot of kids have so much talent and give it away because they can not behave themselves and keep their grades up. Something like this is eye opening and very sad to see.

  51. I think I would handle this situation by just staying calm and understanding what’s at risk. I think this is a great story about understanding what you have going for you.

  52. He made the wrong decision and could have handled the situation differently. He may have just ruined his life and career by losing his temper.

  53. This obviously was a bad decision I hope the guy learned his lesson. He probably won’t recover from this incident. He should dealt with the situation better.

  54. He did get a reasonable punishment. You should never do that to a police officer, especially because he was just doing his job. What he did was way over the line and stupid.

  55. This football player is a legend. He gave millions of people an amazing body slam to watch. Although he made a poor decision that will affect him for the rest of his life, he is now an entertainment icon for life.

  56. All he had to do was remain calm and keep his composure, and he would have had his whole life ahead of him. instead, he lashed out and destroyed so many opportunities for his future.

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  58. His actions were completely wrong, why would he attack an officer? He may had have a good live ahead of him, but now he will have a hard live ahead.

  59. This man was probably high because of the pills. therefore he had no idea what he was doing hurting the officers.

  60. This shows that you shouldn’t drink too much or do drugs because doing that makes you choose horrible and life-changing actions and decisions.

  61. This is so sad that an athlete would give into drugs and alcohol to make a decision that has truly changed his life. For this, he will probably be sent to court, and if found guilty, he will probably be sentenced to 5-10 years in jail

  62. I think it’s sad that the person threw away most of their future for a stupid mistake. If he would have just stayed calm and listened to the officers everything could’ve been avoided. I would never disrespect an officer and always cooperate with what they are saying.

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