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Thomas Gibson: 'Criminal Minds' firing hurt my pride and reputation

"I feel like it took years to make a good reputation and a minute to damage it," the actor said.

By Annie Martin
Thomas Gibson (R) and Chuck Lorre at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame ceremony on March 1, 2012. The actor played Aaron Hotchner on "Criminal Minds." File photo by Jonathan Alcorn/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/60079da8ada7b04cbd1eaf2a1c445286/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Thomas Gibson (R) and Chuck Lorre at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame ceremony on March 1, 2012. The actor played Aaron Hotchner on "Criminal Minds." File photo by Jonathan Alcorn/UPI | License Photo

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 22 (UPI) -- Thomas Gibson says his Criminal Minds firing was a heavy personal blow.

The 54-year-old actor, who played Aaron Hotchner on the CBS series for 11 seasons, admitted his dismissal from the show stung while discussing the "kick" that led to his firing.

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"I feel like it took years to make a good reputation and a minute to damage it," he said in the Oct. 10 issue of People. "My pride and reputation are hurt, but in the end I know the good work is what people will remember."

Gibson was formally let go from Criminal Minds in August after initially being suspended. News outlets reported at the time that the star was fired for kicking a writer, but Gibson told People the kick wasn't intentional.

"We were shooting a scene late one night when I went to Virgil [Williams] and told him there was a line that I thought contradicted an earlier line," the actor said. "He said, 'Sorry, it's necessary, and I absolutely have to have it.'"

"He [later] came into [the] room and started coming towards me. As he brushed past me, my foot came up and tapped him on the leg," he claimed. "If I hadn't moved, he would have run into me. We had some choice words, for which I apologized the next day, and that was it."

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Gibson had told fans after his dismissal that he was "disappointed by what's happened." The star previously said he had hoped to remain on the show while thanking fans for their support.

"I love Criminal Minds and have put my heart and soul into it for the last 12 years," he said. "I had hoped to see it through to the end, but that won't be possible now."

Criminal Minds will return for a 12th season Sept. 28. The season will star Joe Mantegna, A.J. Cook and Paget Brewster.

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