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NASCAR's Kurt Busch Is Suspended Indefinitely Over Domestic Abuse

In this May 22, 2014, photo, Kurt Busch walks with Patricia Driscoll before a race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C.
Terry Renna
In this May 22, 2014, photo, Kurt Busch walks with Patricia Driscoll before a race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C.

NASCAR has decided to suspend Kurt Busch for an indefinite period of time, after a family court judge ruled that "it is more likely than not" that Busch physically abused his ex-girlfriend.

NASCAR said it was punishing Busch for "actions detrimental to stock car racing."

If you remember, Busch became national news during the course of that family court hearing. Asking for a protective order, Patricia Driscoll said that Busch had slammed her head into the wall of a his motor coach last fall.

Busch countered that argument by alleging that Driscoll was a "trained assassin" who could "could take me down at any moment."

The AP reports that the Delaware judge believed Driscoll's version of events and issued an opinion Friday in which he explained issuing a protective order by saying there was a "substantial likelihood" of Busch attacking Driscoll again.

ESPN reports:

"Busch has asked Jones to reconsider the ruling, and Jones has still not decided whether to reopen the case.

"'We know that Kurt never committed an act of family violence,' Busch attorney Rusty Hardin said in a statement Monday. 'The evidence was un-contradicted that Ms. Driscoll committed the criminal offense of trespass when she entered his motor home at night, while he was sleeping, uninvited, without permission, and refused to leave when he repeatedly asked her to get out.

"'Mr. Busch's conduct was totally reasonable and legal under the circumstances. He never intentionally, knowingly or recklessly caused her any injury.'"

In an interview with Sports Illustrated, Driscoll said she had been "bullied" to keep quiet.

"He may have a lot of money and can afford good attorneys, but so can I," Driscoll said. "He's not above the law. He committed a crime, and he cannot continue to buy his way out of trouble. Period."

Driscoll also refuted the allegations that she was a paid assassin and that on one occasion Busch saw her in a bloody ball gown.

"I don't know how many times I can refute these things," Driscoll said. "It doesn't seem to be enough. They are just some of the most ridiculous accusations I've heard in my life."

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.