Delaware commissioner says Kurt Busch ‘more than likely’ abused Driscoll
UPDATE: NASCAR has indefinitely suspended Kurt Busch following a ruling that he committed an act of domestic abuse against former girlfriend Patricia Driscoll.
Kent County (Delaware) Commissioner David Jones ruled Friday that "it is more likely than not" that Kurt Busch "committed an act of abuse" against former girlfriend Patricia Driscoll during a dispute last Sept. 26, 2014, at Dover International Speedway.
In the full ruling in favor of Driscoll’s request for a protective order barring Busch from contacting her, Jones said Busch "committed an act of domestic violence" against Driscoll "by manually strangling her by placing his left hand on her throat, while placing his right hand on her chin and face and smashing her head into the wall of his motor home, thereby recklessly placing (Driscoll) in reasonable fear of physical injury."
On Monday, Jones ruled in favor of Driscoll’s request, but the full language of Jones’ ruling was not released until Friday.
Driscoll alleged that Busch smashed her face into the bedroom wall of his motorhome on the night of the incident, a charge Busch has repeatedly and vehemently denied.
Thursday, Busch’s legal team issued a statement saying it had "filed a motion in the Delaware family court to reopen the hearings on the court ruling imposed against Mr. Busch on Monday."
Busch has not been charged criminally. The Delaware Attorney General’s Office, which has had the case since early December, has not decided whether or not Busch will be charged.
Jones’ order, which is good for one year, says Busch can’t buy or possess firearms or ammunition and must be evaluated for "mental health problems related to anger control and impulse control." It also orders him to stay 100 yards away from Driscoll except for "at NASCAR races and related events where closer proximity is required" for Busch to ‘"perform his duties as a driver or sponsored athlete."
Asked to comment Friday about the new disclosures, NASCAR spokesman David Higdon said, "We’re completing our review of the supplemental disposition of the commissioner."
Stewart-Haas Racing issued a statement last Monday.
"These are serious allegations and we do not take them lightly," said Stewart-Haas Racing executive vice president Joe Custer in the statement. "We are relying on the authorities in Delaware and their collective experience to identify all the facts. They are the experts in these matters and their decision, specifically the one that will be made by the Attorney General, will determine our course of action."