Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson lit up headlines a few weeks ago but has since stayed out of the limelight.
Watson currently faces 22 civil lawsuits, most of which come from women that are massage therapists in the Houston area. Of the 22 women accusing Watson, 13 need to resubmit their civil lawsuits while identifying themselves in a ruling early April. Texas Civil Procedure prohibits the use of a pseudonym to file a civil lawsuit; In sexual assault cases, exceptions only apply to minors.
Attorney Tony Buzbee noted that nine of his 12 clients in question would willingly identify themselves. Several other women not represented by Buzbee also agreed to disclose their names in refiling. Buzbee suggested that his clients enter a confidentiality order instead of repleading with their names in order to avoid any online harassment.
Both sides met in court mid-May where Watson’s lawyer, Rusty Hardin, stated that there were no settlement negotiations being conducted at the time. Hardin suggested that Buzbee has attempted to settle the case on “numerous occasions”.
Since the two sides last met the buzz around Watson has gone quiet. Even Houston’s front office has remained silent on the ordeal, deflecting questions about the future of the quarterback.
However, Texans owner Cal McNair’s personal attorney contacted both parties to suggest mediation.
“Mr. [Cal] McNair was aware that his personal attorney contacted both parties to suggest mediation. Mr. McNair has had no personal involvement in any of those discussions,” one statement from the team read. “The Houston Texans organization has not had any direct contact with either party.”
The cause for the case quieting down remains up in the air but because of the involvement of McNair’s personal attorney, the parties may be working out a settlement behind the scenes.
Photo: (Matt Patterson/AP Photo)