Three-time Olympic gold medallist Grant Hackett has opened up on the circumstances surrounding his high-profile arrest in February.
The 37-year-old was arrested following what his father described as a “breakdown” on the Gold Coast, which had sparked fears for his safety after he was reported missing in the aftermath.
Hackett, who also accused his elder brother of assaulting him, has had a difficult time adjusting to life after swimming, and was detained by police following a mid-air altercation on a flight last year.
“Obviously it was pretty shocking from my end and to look back on that footage [after my arrest on the Gold Coast] is quite agonising,” he told KIIS FM on Tuesday.
“I was in a bad place, I suffer from pretty bad anxiety and ended up drinking. I drank too much at my parents’ house and got into argument with my Dad.
“I went into their guest house and locked myself in there but they didn’t know that.
“I woke up to two police officers – I was shocked. It was quite terrifying.
“Once I was released with that, I didn’t know where I was at with my family and I just went to a hotel for four or five days.”
Hackett admitted he hit “rock bottom” after being arrested, while he also opened up on the fight he had with his brother.
Shortly after being arrested, Hackett posted a photo on Instagram of himself sporting a black eye and said his older brother “beat the s**t” out of him.
“I didn’t get any punches in there as you could see from the results,” he said.
“I wasn’t in a good space for a couple of months. He [my brother] came over to my house and I was refusing that help.
“I didn’t want him to come in and when I get in that state of mind, I get quite reclusive.
“He wanted to come in. I didn’t want him to come in … I was trying to push him out and we got into a push-and-shove and he whacked me with his weak arm, so I’d hate to see him with his strong arm.
“We were both very regretful of the situation. I was very upset with my brother, he was very upset with me.”
In the revealing interview on The Kyle and Jackie O Show, Hackett also spoke about the incident in which he was accused of groping a passenger and giving him a ‘nipple cripple’ on a flight.
He said many of the reports after the incident were false.
“I finished Olympic trials where I didn’t have the success I wanted, I was in a dark place,” he said.
“I drank before that flight. There was one gentleman sitting in front of me … I was drunk for sure.
“I tapped him on the shoulder just to ask to put his seat up a little bit … if I touched his nipple, I didn’t meant to. I didn’t mean to grab anyone inappropriately.
“The next minute in the media I’m being confrontational, I’m swearing … I didn’t do anything like that. I even asked him again if he was okay but he was really upset.”
Last week, swimming champion Michael Phelps spoke about how he invited Hackett to the United States to spend time with him and help him with his recovery.