In the audio, Espinal told Hill their son had said, "Daddy did it," per the Kansas City Star's Brooke Pryor. According to The Athletic's Nate Taylor, Espinal also said Hill would punch their son in the arm and use a belt as forms of discipline.
When Espinal told Hill their son is "terrified" of him, he reportedly replied, ‘You need to be terrified of me, too, b---h,’ per Taylor.
Taylor shared more from the exchange (warning: tweets contain profanity):
Nate Taylor @ByNateTaylor
Crystal Espinal: "He started crying & you were like, 'Shut up, shut up, stop crying, stop crying.'" Tyreek Hill: "Right." Crystal Espinal: "He kept crying because he was scared. He's terrified. You grabbed onto him somehow or he fell? 1 of the 2." Hill: "I didn't do nothing."
Espinal also told Hill she "rode for him" when speaking with authorities during the investigation, per Pryor.
The district attorney's office in Johnson County, Kansas, announced on Wednesday it wasn't planning to file charges against Hill or Espinal. Authorities had opened an investigation into possible battery and possible child abuse or neglect at Hill's home.
District Attorney Stephen M. Howe said there wasn't enough evidence to charge either Hill or Espinal, though he believes a crime occurred.
KCTV5 said it received the audio, which Espinal created as an "insurance policy," from an anonymous source: "Espinal sent it to at least one friend for safekeeping because she didn’t feel she could keep a recording on her phone. It has since been shared and sent to us by someone who is concerned about the welfare of the couple’s child."
The station added it turned the audio over to Howe, who was examining the content of the recording.
Prior to the 2019 NFL draft, ESPN's Sam Ponder asked NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell about Hill's status. At the time of the interview, the audio from Hill and Espinal's conversation had yet to be released.
"Well you should wait and get the facts," Goodell said (h/t Pro Football Talk's Michael David Smith). "That's the first thing you should do, Sam. I mean, you know, they don't have any information that they're willing to share with us. When you get the facts, then you make a decision about how it fits into our personal conduct policy. But you don't rush to judgment, and you don't make a decision without having those facts."
Hill was a fifth-round draft pick of the Chiefs in 2016. He had pleaded guilty to domestic assault and battery by strangulation in August 2015. Espinal, who was pregnant at the time of the assault, testified Hill had punched and choked her.
Hill completed the terms of his plea agreement last August. As a result, the case was dismissed and expunged from his criminal record.