(CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas) -- A prominent Texas judge who was filmed beating his daughter with a belt and cursing at her said he was merely disciplining his child and did nothing wrong.
"No, in my mind I haven't done anything wrong other than discipline my child after she was caught stealing. And I did lose my temper, but I've since apologized," Judge William Adams told KZTV Wednesday after the video went viral on the Internet.
Hillary Adams, the daughter who is seen being beaten in the video, secretely recorded the beating seven years ago and recently uploaded it to YouTube on Oct. 27. The video was then posted on Reddit, a link-sharing website, where it racked up millions of views and incited anger among viewers.
"I just wanted somebody to see it and tell me, 'No, Hillary this wasn't right and I'm glad you were able to grow up and move on past this' and 'No, your dad wasn't right,'" Hillary Adams told ABC News' Chris Cuomo.
Both Hillary and William Adams have said the beating took place as punishment for then-16-year-old Hillary illegally downloading from the Internet. It was shot in 2004 by a secret camera Hillary set up when she anticipated her father might beat her. She said the beatings were a regular part of her life during those years, but she did not publish the video until now because she feared it would incite more violence.
"Another fight was getting out of control and I knew the beating was coming so I just waited," Hillary Adams said.
Hillary and her mother, Hallie Adams, have since moved out of the family home. The family has not said where a younger daughter, age 11, is living.
The Aransas County Court, where William Adams has his office, posted a sign canceling his hearings for Thursday, according to ABC News affiliate Kiii-TV. Phone calls to the judge's home and office went unanswered that day.
Neighbors told the news station that the judge and his girlfriend were seen leaving Wednesday after taking belongings from their home, including bags, hanging clothes, a briefcase, a laptop, and six to eight gun cases.
The video, which prompted thousands of calls of complaint to the courthouse, sheriff's office, and police department, also prompted a police investigation into the matter. Authorities will try to authenticate the video and then turn it over to the district attorney, who can then present it to a grand jury.
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