Shawne Merriman: Tila Tequila Appeared Drunk

Shawne Merriman: Tila Tequila Appeared Drunk
Tila Tequila
Lionel Hahn/Abaca

updated 09/08/2009 at 03:30 PM EDT

originally published 09/08/2009 03:30PM

San Diego Chargers quarterback Shawne Merriman is fighting back against reports he assaulted reality TV star Tila Tequila, saying the media – and Tequila – are getting it all wrong.

"There have been no charges filed against me," he tells FoxSports in his first public comments about the incident. "I will continue to cooperate fully with the [San Diego Sheriff's] Department, and I look forward to clearing my name regarding these false allegations. I want to put this behind me so I can continue to focus on a successful season for the San Diego Chargers."

Tila Nguyen – her real name – made a citizen's arrest of Merriman on Sunday, alleging that he choked and unlawfully restrained her at his home in the San Diego suburb of Poway.

Merriman says he didn't assault Nguyen, and was actually trying to help her.

"I was concerned about her welfare given the intoxicated state she appeared to be in and I encouraged her to stay until safe transportation could be provided," he says. "We would all do our best to help a friend if we considered their actions to be detrimental to their personal safety. I in no way caused any harm to Ms. Nguyen, however, paramedics were called and she was examined but no injuries were reported. She was released and has since returned to Los Angeles, California."

After the incident, in an apparent move to cast doubt on Merriman's version of the story, the diminutive Nguyen wrote on her Twitter account that she's allergic to alcohol – thus the ironic nickname "Tila Tequila." The Tweet later appeared to have been deleted.

Nguyen's most recent Tweet (posted Monday) read: "I fear nothing and no one. You know that. God saw everything and God will always know the truth.....Only the truth behind those curtains...."

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