Of the 22 women who formally accused Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson of sexual assault and harassment in an active civil suit, 20 have formally agreed to disclose their identity as ordered by the court.
Only one accuser is dropping her name and accusations from the case due to privacy and security concerns, court documents revealed Wednesday.
However, the accuser “reserves the right to refile this case once such concerns are addressed,” the documents showed.
One other accuser has not been reached by the court to date.
Unnamed accusers, all of them women, were ordered to be named publicly as a result of a motion from Watson’s attorneys.
A total of 21 accusers remain from at least four different states, per court documents, but only 12 were identified in the filing before Wednesday.
Attorney Rusty Hardin, who represents Watson in the case, successfully argued for the public identification of all accusers to allow for an investigation by the defense into individual claims.
The accusers are from California, Texas, Georgia and Arizona and all are connected in some way to massage sessions, the suit documents indicate.
Hardin must respond to the initial filing by Monday, unless he seeks an extension from the court, following his effort to gain access to their identities.
On April 3, the Houston Police Department confirmed it was opening a legal investigation into the claims at the heart of the civil suit.
Watson has denied all allegations while the NFL said it will “closely monitor” developments and launch its own investigation through league security. Having named accusers for potential interviews and investigations could lead to Watson temporarily being placed on the Commissioner’s Exempt List.
The civil suits landed as Watson was attempting to maneuver himself out of Houston by demanding a trade.
–Field Level Media
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