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Charges "likely" after Usanga formally quizzed by Gardai regarding assault

NewsBy Shuki Byrne
Interview: Gardai have quizzed Usanga
Interview: Gardai have quizzed Usanga

Emma Murphy's partner has been formally interviewed by Gardai regarding allegations of assault which were posted online.

Fitness instructor Francis Usanga gave a detailed explanation regarding the alleged assault to Gardai on Monday night at Ballymun Garda Station in Dublin. 

The 29-year-old was not arrested following the planned appointment and he was released without charge.

However, a source said a file is being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and that charges "were likely". 

Emma's original Facebook posting has become a worldwide sensation, with close to eight million views, and has been picked up in news outlets as far afield as Australia and America.

After her inspirational, heartrending video Emma went on to thank the people who contacted her. 

"I needed to be a good role model for my kids and I needed the strength from somewhere and by posting the video that I did I’ve reached so many people. People all around the world are contacting me saying ‘thank you’, ‘thank you’”. 

Usanga, who is a fitness guru on RTE’s Today show with Dáithi ó Sé and Maura Derrane and who has acted on TV3’s Red Rock soap, confessed to being violent twice before in his relationship with his partner, causing her to be hospitalised and resulting in the gardai being called.

He apologised to Emma and her family but admitted his violent attack was wrong. 

"I’d like to apologise to anybody I have hurt in the past few days, anybody that I offended, anybody who sees this video," Francis told the Sunday World.

"I’d like to apologise to Emma, to her family, to my family and my friends, for people who have a lot of trust and a lot of work in me. I’d like to sincerely apologise to all my professional people, such as my sponsors, the people who gave me breaks in my fitness career, such as RTE – I’m just heartbroken and distraught at what’s happened.

"I was in the wrong and no man should hit a woman, that’s 100 per cent right. 

"I should never have raised my hand to her. You should never hit a woman or use violence.

"It was uncalled for, I don’t condone it. It was very hard. I pushed her really hard in the face. It was so quick that it would have been the strongest part of my hand, it was with an open hand. It was more of a push, a real hard push. It was pretty violent and there’s no excuse at all and I’m extremely sorry for that."