Tony Buzbee, attorney for the 22 women suing Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, spoke to a Houston television station Wednesday about concern about the National Football League’s handling of its investigation. The lawsuits allege sexual assault and inappropriate behavior.
Speaking to Fox 26 in Houston, Buzbee said “some of the women felt disrespected” during their first three meetings with NFL investigators, which he said led Fox to attend a fourth meeting between the league’s investigative team participated and its customers.
Buzbee told the broadcaster that four of his clients met with the league’s senior investigator Lisa Friel and that he “probably has four other women who want to hang out with the NFL,” but he’s not sure he is them Letting the NFL speak to the league investigators
In his interview, Buzbee didn’t say what the league did to make its customers feel disrespected. Watson is being sued by 22 women in civil court and is being investigated by the Houston Police Department for allegations ranging from improper touch to sexual assault by massage therapists from March 2020 to March 2021.
“The allegations are very worrying and the league immediately started investigating the matter under the NFL’s Personal Conduct Policy,” said NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy in an email to ESPN on Thursday. “The investigation involves gathering information, monitoring developments in law enforcement agencies, and conducting interviews with relevant individuals willing to participate with attorneys present.
“During her decade-long career as the director of the sex crimes division of the Manhattan District Attorney and most recently as the NFL’s special investigative advisor for the past six years, Lisa has earned a reputation for being the consummate professional who conducts investigations and interviews with compassion and fairness to find out the truth. “
Buzbee also told Fox that eight to ten of his clients had met with the Houston Police Department and he was happy with the way the Houston PD worked with their clients. In March, Buzbee publicly stated that he was uncomfortable with his clients going to the Houston police force. After a complainant went to the Houston Police Department, police opened an investigation into the allegations against Watson.
On Thursday, a Houston Police Department spokesman said “there is an ongoing investigation” into the allegations against Watson but would not say how many women have spoken to police.
Buzbee also told Fox that there are no plans to resolve the case between Watson and the women who are suing him.
ESPN reporters John Barr and Sarah Barshop contributed to this report.