Father: NFL mishandled my daughter’s abuse case
MARIETTA, Georgia (AP) — The father of a woman who once dated NFL receiver Brandon Marshall called for the league’s commissioner to resign Wednesday because he’s disappointed in the way his daughter’s abuse allegations were handled.
Clarence Watley spoke at a news conference about his daughter, Rasheedah Watley, who he said was abused by Marshall. Attorney Gloria Allred called the news conference amid increasing scrutiny of how the league handles abuse allegations against its players.
Watley said he and others wrote to Goodell about his daughter’s case and never heard back. Watley described the NFL’s investigation as one-sided.
“I told him that I was troubled with the fact that he, the commissioner ... had completed his investigation without no contact with the victim or her family whatsoever,” Watley said.
A friend, Kristeena Spivey, spoke of seeing Rasheedah Watley’s bruised face and eyes after leaving an encounter with Marshall.
Marshall was with the Denver Broncos at the time the allegations surfaced and now plays for the Chicago Bears. He was suspended for three games in 2008, but the suspension was reduced to one game. He denied the allegations and was never convicted. In some of the episodes, charges weren’t filed.
Commissioner Roger Goodell said after Marshall’s 2008 suspension was announced that the term of the punishment could be reduced if he complied with required counseling and other conditions, NFL officials said in an email.
Chicago Bears General Manager Phil Emery said in a statement that Marshall has acknowledged his past and is now a thoughtful and proactive leader. Broncos officials said the allegations of abuse were taken very seriously and the franchise doesn’t condone violence of any type toward women.
Watley’s daughter wasn’t at the news conference, and Allred said she would not be commenting.
Her father said the case should not be ignored. “I don’t think that past victims should just be forgotten,” he said.