Here’s what you need to know about the Antonio Brown sexual assault lawsuit.
The saga that has been the Antonio Brown story took a much darker turn on Tuesday when a New York Times report from Ben Shpigel revealed the 31-year-old has been accused of raping his former trainer, according to a federal lawsuit filed in the Southern District of Florida
The lawsuit lists three separate incidents in June 2017 and May 2018 in which Brown sexually assaulted a former classmate at Central Michigan, Britney Taylor, who then became his trainer.
From Shpigel’s report:
“According to the suit, Brown sexually assaulted Taylor twice during training sessions in June 2017. First, he exposed himself and kissed her without permission, the lawsuit says. Later that month, the lawsuit says, while they were streaming religious programming on a tablet at his South Florida home, Brown started masturbating behind Taylor and ejaculated on her back. The lawsuit contains images of profane messages that Taylor says Brown sent to her about the incident…
Then, the lawsuit says, on May 20, 2018, Brown forced her onto a bed, pushed her face into the mattress and “forcibly” raped her. She tried to resist him, screaming and repeatedly shouting “no” and “stop,” the lawsuit says, but Brown refused and penetrated her.”
Brown’s representation denied any wrongdoings and suggested they would take further action to clear his name.
“Mr. Brown denies each and every allegation in the lawsuit,” Darren Heitner, his attorney, released in a statement. “He will pursue all legal remedies to not only clear his name, but to also protect other professional athletes against false accusations.”
Antonio Brown sexual assault lawsuit: Will AB play this year?
While legal action is being pursued, the NFL looks to be acting quickly in its impending investigation.
Commissioner Roger Goodell reportedly will consider placing Brown on the league’s exempt list, according to Mark Maske of the Washington Post on Wednesday.
Brown would be immediately ineligible to play for the New England Patriots — the team he signed for on Monday following a messy split with the Oakland Raiders — if he were placed on that list.
Goodell most notably used the exempt list with Adrian Peterson and Greg Hardy in 2014 when both men faced criminal charges in domestic violence cases.
He also allowed Brown to practice with the team on Wednesday.
Taylor made it known that she would be willing to cooperate with the NFL in its investigation and is planning to meet with the league next week, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
This isn’t always the case, which was seen recently when Kansas City Chiefs star Tyreek Hill’s suspension was lifted due to a lack of cooperation when delving into allegations of abuse of his three-year-old son.
Taylor’s availability would allow Goodell and the NFL to assess other evidence and then speak with Brown promptly as his future in the NFL and with the Patriots is currently in doubt.