Updated at: 11/07/2012 7:05 PM
By COLLEEN LONG
(AP) NEW YORK - Former Detroit Tigers slugger Delmon Young pleaded guilty Wednesday to aggravated harassment for shouting an anti-Semitic slur and tackling a man to the ground outside a New York City hotel last spring.
The 27-year-old outfielder, who became a free agent after the World Series, was ordered to complete 10 days of community service and enroll in a program at the Museum of Tolerance New York as part of the Manhattan District Attorney’s office restorative justice program.
"Delmon clearly regrets what happened and took the necessary steps to put this issue behind him today," his lawyer, Dan Ollen, said in a statement. "He has learned from this experience and will continue to do everything he can to improve himself as a person and player."
In the court-ordered program, Young will participate in interactive workshops, videos, guided discussions and special instruction by museum educators to explore issues of prejudice, diversity, and tolerance, the district attorney’s office said.
The museum reports progress back to prosecutors. If Young completes the program successfully he’ll be able to withdraw his plea and plead guilty to a lesser charge.
"Dispositions for defendants charged with bias-related crimes need to be thoughtful and tailored toward healing both the defendant and the entire targeted community," District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance said.
Ollen said that in six months, "the charges against Delmon will be vacated and reduced to a simple violation of harassment, which is not a crime under New York law."
Young was standing outside of the Hilton New York and was accused of yelling anti-Jewish epithets at a group of tourists, tussling with them and tackling one to the ground in April, when the Tigers were in town to play the New York Yankees.
Young apologized to his team and was suspended without pay for seven days by Major League Baseball, costing him approximately $257,240 of his $6,725,000 salary. He batted .267 during the season with 18 homers and 74 RBIs, and hit three home runs and had a .313 batting average in the postseason.
He had a tying home run in the sixth inning of Game 4 of the World Series. San Francisco won 4-3 in 10 innings to complete a sweep the Tigers.
Detroit is prepared to let the designated hitter sign with another team. Speaking at the general managers’ meetings in Indian Wells, Calif., Tigers President Dave Dombrowski declined comment.
"Because he’s a free agent," he said.
Associated Press writers Jennifer Peltz and Melissa A. Murphy contributed to this report.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)