Deshaun Watson is now facing 24 civil lawsuits, but his lawyer has a huge gripe with regards to how the media is dealing with the women who are making these complaints against the Cleveland Browns QB.
Brent Schrotenboer of USA Today reported that Rusty Hardin has accused the media of not investigating the credibility of the women who have sued Watson, due to concerns of being accused of “victim blaming” or getting called “anti-woman.”
“It is important to note that without exception every woman, in some way or the other, her deposition has been inconsistent with the lawsuit they filed that created all the publicity,” Hardin told Schrotenboer.
Tony Buzbee, the attorney who is representing all of the women suing Watson, told cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot that a 24th civil lawsuit would be filed soon, and it indeed happened.
The news comes days after a 23rd woman, Nia Smith, filed a civil suit against Watson in Texas alleging sexual misconduct. She reportedly changed her mind about filing the suit against the quarterback after Ashley Solis and Kyla Hayes went on HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel and condemned the Browns for signing him to a five-year contract with an NFL-record $230 million guaranteed.
“Where we’re going from now on, we’re going to try to answer yours and other people’s questions in the words of the women,” Hardin told Schrotenboer.
Two grand juries in Texas declined to indict Watson in March on nine of the 10 criminal complaints alleging sexual assault or misconduct, with the 10th complaint not being presented by prosecutors to the grand jury.
A little over a week later, the Houston Texans traded Watson to the Cleveland Browns.
The NFL is still in the process of finishing its investigation into the allegations, and Watson could be suspended under the league’s personal-conduct policy.
“I think we’re nearing the end of the investigative period,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said late last month. “Then it will be handled by our disciplinary officer.”
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