Sinatraa Releases Statement in Response to the Valorant Community
On 12th April, Jay “sinatraa” Won announced that he was returning to competitive Valorant nearly after a year. After the announcement, many in the esports community including Valorant Champions Tour caster, Matt “Twiggy” Twigg and former League of Legends caster, Indiana “Froskurinn” Black have expressed that they’re opposed to the player's return, citing the allegations of sexual assault that led to his suspension in the first place. Now, in response to the concerns of the community, sinatraa has released a statement intending to “clarify the facts” about his situation.
Sinatraa addresses concerns of the community
Sinatraa discussed the situation between himself and his ex-girlfriend Cleo “cle0h” Hernandez. In a dated 15th April, sinatraa wrote, “I was a s****y boyfriend, I emotionally hurt Cleo, I never sexually assaulted her.” He also said that there was an investigation that “found no conclusive evidence that any crime was committed.” Sinatraa also pointed out that he served a six-month suspension that was issued by Riot Games and that he was never charged with any crime.
Additionally, he stated that, in January, Riot confirmed to him in writing that he was fully cleared to return to pro play while doubling down on his wish to compete in Valorant. Sinatraa also wrote, “If you are my fan please don't harass Cleo, please be supportive of her as well through this process.”
Sinatraa also attached a screenshot of an official email allegedly sent by Riot which indicated that he was fully eligible to return to professional competition. The email read, “You are now fully eligible to sign up and play in VCT. For additional context, the training was supposed to focus on “cooperating with investigations”, however, we feel like you would already know most of the information covered in the training.”
The training that the email talks about is a “professional conduct training” which was first mandated by Riot in May 2021. Riot that it was suspending sinatraa for six months for violating Rule 8.1 of the VALORANT Global Competition Policy by failing to fully cooperate with the Tournament Operator’s investigation and also added that he would be required to complete the said training. Riot also deferred the matter to law enforcement authorities.
Cle0h’s response to sinatraa’s statement
Esports personality and co-owner of Full Squad Gaming Jake Lucky, who has been actively updating the community on the situation, tweeted screenshots from cle0h’s private Twitter account. She reportedly claimed Riot told her that sinatraa lied multiple times during the investigation and that he did not cooperate.
In one of the tweets, she wrote, “I just emailed Riot about this :) the fact that he was allowed to not complete any training whatsoever after that being part of his punishment is disgusting to me and i’m not just gonna let that happen so :)”
Riot’s email to sinatraa about the professional conduct training has only added fuel to the fire. The community at large is questioning how an individual who allegedly lied and failed to comply with a sexual assault investigation could be let go with just a suspension. It has raised several questions about Riot’s take on accountability and rehabilitative actions. Riot Games is yet to respond to this development.