The attorney for Deshaun Watson admitted Friday that his client did have sexual encounters with some of the women suing the Texans quarterback, but said the encounters were not coercive and Watson
The attorney for Deshaun Watson admitted Friday that his client did have sexual encounters with some of the women suing the Texans quarterback, but said the encounters were not coercive and Watson didn’t use his status as a celebrity athlete to force anyone into such acts.
“In some of these massages there’s going to be no question — we’ve never run from it — our first announcement has always been about consent, that on some occasions some active sexual activity would have taken place,” Watson’s lawyer, Rusty Hardin, said at a press conference. “I’m not going to go into what it is, the nature, the numbers or with whom, but I think you can rightfully assume that question always, that we have always been emphasizing, never at any time, under any circumstances … did this young man ever engage in anything that was not mutually desired by the other party.”
The press conference came on the heels of rulings by two Texas judges that most of the women accusing Watson of sexual assault and inappropriate conduct must reveal their identities.
That news, covering 13 of the 22 lawsuits filed against Watson, came after just two of the women have identified themselves.
During a hearing involving 12 of the lawsuits, at the 113th District Court in Houston, the accusers’ attorney, Tony Buzbee, and Hardin agreed that nine of those 12 women would reveal their identities by Wednesday. Judge Rabeea Sultan Collier granted a request by Hardin that the other three women release their names as well.
In an earlier hearing, held at the 270th District Court, it was ordered that another of the accusers must reveal her name as well. Hardin argued at that heading that Buzbee was trying to “kill the reputation of our client” by the use of the accusers’ anonymity.
Buzbee countered by saying anonymity is common in these types of cases. He used one of the accusers, Ashley Solis, as an example. After coming forward, Solis received death threats.
Buzbee said he was OK with Hardin and his team being made aware of a woman’s identity, but not making it public. Judge Dedra Davis didn’t agree.
“We need a balance of interests. A balance of interests is required for both parties,” Davis said.
NFL spokesperson Brian McCarthy told ESPN the allegations against Watson were “deeply disturbing,” and the league is looking into the matter. Houston police also are investigating.
Watson has denied any wrongdoing.
This story originally appeared on: NyPost - Author:Zach Braziller