As of Tuesday night, one woman has reportedly dropped her civil suit against Texans star quarterback Deshaun Watson. That news is coming directly from Watson’s lawyer Rusty Hardin, according to Tom Pelissero with the NFL Network.
“We believe we have names for 20 of the 22 lawsuits,” Hardin told Pelissero, who relayed that information through a tweet soon after. “We’ve got one dismissed and we’re looking for one [name].”
Judges ruled last week 14 of Watson’s accusers needed to reveal their identities in court filings, allowing Watson’s attorneys to respond and defend their client. The women’s attorney, Tony Buzbee, said all 22 planned to do so; 20 have so far, and one chose to dismiss her claim.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) April 14, 2021
This news follows a judge’s ruling on Friday that 14 of the now 21 plaintiffs would have to disclose their identities. Two of them had already come forward, but it looks like they’re going above and beyond by releasing all the names.
The lawyer representing the women, Tony Buzbee, said as much in a statement on Tuesday. He says that he will be amending all complaints to include the names of every accuser.
“It appears the Watson team thinks that if these courageous women are forced to identify themselves, they would slink away and not pursue the matter,” Buzbee wrote in his statement, via the New York Post. “Watson and his counsel badly miscalculated … Today we are amending our petitions to include the names of the victims. Even those not currently subject to court order. The message to Watson’s team from these brave women is: ‘be careful what you ask for.’”
If that was in fact the strategy by the defense, then it doesn’t look like it’s going to work like they had hoped. Stay tuned for more updates on this story.
Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.