Levi Pettit is sorry. The Highland Park grad, one of two University of Oklahoma students expelled this month for leading their Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity brothers in a racist chant, spoke to reporters at Fairview Baptist Church in Oklahoma City after a closed-doors meeting with community leaders.
"There is no excuse for my behavior," he said. "I never thought of myself as a racist. I never even considered the possibility. But the bottom line is that the words I said in the chant were mean, and hateful and racist. I will be deeply sorry and deeply ashamed of what I have done for the rest of my life."
Pettit was accompanied Oklahoma state Senator Anastasia Pittman, who was contacted by Pettit and his family shortly after he was busted for leading the chant. Pittman stressed the need for healing across racial lines.
"The purpose is to focus on being helpful to the healing in both communities," she said after Pettit stopped taking questions.
Pettit refused to answer multiple inquiries about how he learned the racist song but emphasized that he will use what he's learned to stamp out racism wherever he should see it in the future.
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"From this point forward, I will be the leader I should have been on the bus and stand up against racism in any form," he said.