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Newly minted New England Patriots wide receiver Antonio Brown has been accused of sexual assault by a former trainer, according to a lawsuit filed in the Southern District of Florida.
The lawsuit, filed on Tuesday by the lawyers of Britney Taylor, alleges that Brown sexually assaulted her twice in 2017 and raped her in 2018. It also provides evidence that Brown bragged about assaulting her and then bullied her for accusations in an email.
The lawsuit claims that in June 2017, Brown sexually assaulted Taylor during training sessions. In the first incident, he’s accused of flashing her and kissing her without consent. He’s accused of ejaculating on her back without her consent in a separate incident. Taylor said she did not realize what happened until she felt “a wet spot soak through her clothing.”
According to the lawsuit, Brown was nonchalant about it and brushed it off with “oh ‘B’…you know, I’m sorry,” before leaving the room.
In screenshots of two emails dated June 29, Brown is seen bragging about masturbating on Taylor’s back.
“I jack my dick on your back !” reads one of the emails, according to the lawsuit.
In another email, he wrote she is a “weak bitch.”
The address of the recipient is not shown in the screenshots, but the lawsuit alleges that Brown wrote the messages to Taylor.
Taylor, a highly accomplished gymnast who qualified to compete in the Olympics before she started college, then reportedly cut off contact with him until he approached her again to be his trainer. Taylor says while the two were working together in May 2018, Brown aggressively raped her, forcefully penetrating her while she repeatedly asked him to stop. The next day, when Taylor tried to address it with him, he said she made him “feel like a real rapist.”
Darren Heitner, a lawyer for Brown, said in a statement that the allegations are untrue.
“Mr. Brown denies each and every allegation in the lawsuit,” Heitner said in a statement on Tuesday. “He will pursue all legal remedies to not only clear his name, but to also protect other professional athletes against false accusations.”
The statement also insinuated that Taylor had financial motives and only cut off contact with Brown after he refused to put a $1.6 million investment in her “business project.” It further alleged that Taylor “resurfaced and offered” training to Brown and said “any sexual interaction” between the two was “entirely consensual.”
Heitner said in a follow-up tweet that Brown “will leave no stone unturned and will aggressively defend himself.”
Twitter had mixed reactions, with some questioning why Taylor chose to pursue a civil case versus a criminal case, bordering on victim-blaming. Some stood in support of Taylor.
Antonio Brown’s accuser continuing her relationship with him after the alleged assaults is *not* evidence the attacks never happened. I can’t believe we’re still doing this in 2019. https://t.co/JA0uzDFces— Alex Reimer (@AlexReimer1) September 11, 2019
Some on Twitter also tried to joke that Taylor is a white woman. According to the lawsuit, Taylor is African-American.
It’s unclear if Brown will continue to play for the team as the case goes forward. The New England Patriots did not immediately respond to the Daily Dot’s request for comments.
In a statement posted on their website, New England Patriots said the issue is being investigated.
“We take these allegations very seriously. Under no circumstance does this organization condone sexual violence or assault,” the statement said.
If you are a victim of sexual assault or want more information on sexual assault, contact the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).
Samira Sadeque is a New York-based journalist reporting on immigration, sexual violence, and mental health, and will sometimes write about memes and dinosaurs too. Her work also appears in Reuters, NPR, and NBC among other publications. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School, and her work has been nominated for SAJA awards. Follow: @Samideque