Deshaun Watson has settled all but four of the 24 civil lawsuits against him, according to a statement from attorney Tony Buzbee.
Buzbee, who represents the plaintiffs in the cases, confirmed the confidential settlements Tuesday. Watson is facing multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, and that’s a big reason why his future in the NFL is cloudy despite his lucrative contract with the Cleveland Browns.
“Today I announce that all cases against Deshaun Watson, with the exception of four, have settled,” Buzbee stated, in part. “We are working through the paperwork related to those settlements. Once we have done so, those particular cases will be dismissed. The terms and amounts of the settlements are confidential. We won’t comment further on the settlement or those cases.
“As stated, Ashley Solis is one of the heroes of this story. Her case has not settled and thus her story and that of the other three brave women will continue. I look forward to trying these cases in due course, consistent with other docket obligations and the court’s schedule.”
In his statement, Buzbee further praised Solis for coming forward and bringing the allegations to light. He said it paved the way for the other women to speak out, and sparked a wave of change across the sports world.
“The cases against Deshaun Watson started with one phone call, from one brave and strong woman,” Buzbee stated. “That woman was Ashley Solis. At the time of that call she was just one of the hundreds of calls seeking legal assistance that our firm gets weekly. Even though she was originally turned away by our screening process, my staff insisted that I personally speak with her. I’m glad she persisted.
“Once we took a second look, and after having contact with Watson’s original lawyer who disrespected Ashley and her profession and who arrogantly minimized the conduct of someone he referred to as an ‘asset,’ I was convinced that our law firm should try to help her. As a result of Ashley’s lone but brave voice, soon many women who had allegedly experienced the same conduct were emboldened to step forward. I am incredibly proud to represent them all. They have endured vile criticism and fanatical ignorance. They faced withering cross examination by skilled litigators and stood firm. They are warriors all.
“Today we have an important announcement about these cases, but it is important to point out that, without Ashley Solis, the conduct experienced by these women would likely have continued unfettered. The truth is, without her courage and willingness to come forward, the NFL wouldn’t currently be contemplating discipline; there would be no examination of how teams might knowingly or unknowingly enable certain behavior, sports teams wouldn’t be reviewing their personnel screening processes; and this important story wouldn’t have dominated the sports headlines for more than a year.”