Assault Lawsuits Continue to Mount Against Deshaun Watson

    Assault Lawsuits Continue to Mount Against Deshaun Watson
    Last updated Jun 08, 2022
    Image credit: USATSI [via CBS Sports]


    • According to reporting from The New York Times, 24 massage therapists have now filed suits accusing the NFL's Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson of sexual misconduct, coercive behavior, and sexual assault. He has denied all allegations.[1]
    • The fresh revelations have been lifted from depositions and evidence for the civil lawsuits leveled against him. Up to 66 different women - who have remained anonymous - may be involved in the allegations.[1]
    • Watson's former team, the Houston Texans, has faced controversy for providing the player with Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) for massage therapists and providing him with a venue to receive massage therapy.[2]
    • Grand juries in two Texas counties have already declined to bring criminal charges against Watson, and in Mar. he was traded to the Cleveland Browns for a guaranteed fee of $230M over the next five years.[3]
    • Watson has been outspoken in his leadership to protest against racial injustice and police brutality. Browns fans are generally divided about their approval of the club's acquisition.[4]


    Narrative A

    The Texans were complicit in enabling Watson's coercive and predatory behavior. Aside from managing his NDAs, they also provided him with a well-connected lawyer who has smeared the women speaking out against him. Organizations are continuing to protect powerful men at the cost of victims and the truth.

    Narrative B

    Men are falsely accused all too often and #MeToo is shifting society dangerously close to a presumption of "guilty until proven innocent" in the case of sexual misconduct. Polls have shown that 60% of men are now afraid to mentor women at work, and over half of adult Americans are as worried about men facing false accusations as they are women facing harassment. The court of public opinion is no substitute for justice.

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