Dancing With the Stars’ Sharna Burgess ‘Shocked’ by Adrian Peterson’s Season 32 Casting After Child Abuse Charges

Dancing With the Stars veteran Sharna Burgess thinks the newly announced Season 32 lineup is “incredible”… with the exception of one contestant.

On Thursday’s episode of the Old-ish podcast, which Burgess co-hosts with Brian Austin Green and Randy Spelling, she confessed she was “shocked” by the casting of NFL player Adrian Peterson in the wake of child abuse charges he previously faced. (See the full Season 32 cast list here.)

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“There’s one person that I would love to share I’m really shocked is on there, which is Adrian Peterson, a football player,” Burgess began. “I had some people reach out to me and say, ‘Have you seen this? Do you know his history?’ I looked it up. The man has been charged with child abuse of his 4-year-old son, in the way that he punishes him. That is just devastating for me.

“You know how we talk about the things you could have avoided?” she continued. “I’m telling you now if I walked into a room and that was my partner, I would turn around and walk right back out. There is no way — now being a mother — I would be able to stomach that. But him aside, the rest of the cast looks incredible.”

Peterson was indicted in 2014 on charges of reckless or negligent injury to a child; it was alleged at the time that he disciplined his then-4-year-old son by abusing him with a wooden implement. Peterson ultimately did not serve any jail time for the charges after reaching a plea agreement. He was, however, fined, put on probation, ordered to community service and suspended by the NFL.

TVLine has reached out to ABC for comment on Burgess’ remarks.

Earlier this week, Burgess pulled back the curtain a bit on her 14 seasons as a Dancing With the Stars pro, revealing that she had quite a bit of friction with one partner in particular. She didn’t name the celebrity in question, but context clues indicated she was referring to Jesse Metcalfe (Desperate Housewives, Chesapeake Shores), with whom she finished in 12th place on Season 29.

“If she is referring to a time where our client Jesse Metcalfe worked with Ms. Burgess four years ago, the only recollection was that they didn’t get along,” Metcalfe’s personal publicist told TVLine. “Vague insinuations are not only reckless but also irrelevant.”

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