Antonio Brown’s lawyer promises a countersuit against Brown’s accuser

Getty Images

When sued in civil court, the natural human response is to say, “Let’s sue them back.” It’s rarely a good idea to give in to that impulse.

The lawyer representing Patriots receiver Antonio Brown has yet to give that advice to his client; instead, attorney Darren Heitner seems to be embracing the idea of exercising the right to respond to the lawsuit for sexual assault and rape filed by Britney Taylor by turning the tables and suing her.

“Antonio Brown will leave no stone unturned and will aggressively defend himself, including exercising all of his rights in countersuits,” Heitner declared on Twitter.

On numerous occasions during 18 years of representing clients who had been sued, the client’s denial of wrongdoing came with anger. That anger manifested itself in a desire to make the person who filed the lawsuit experience the same helpless frustration that comes with being on the wrong end of a claim for monetary damages. Every time the client expressed a desire to proceed in that manner, I talked them out of it.

In most cases, there’s not much money to be obtained from the person filing the initial lawsuit. In most cases, a countersuit creates even harder feelings, making it more difficult to find an acceptable resolution short of a jury trial, if the respective strengths and weaknesses of the two opposing views of reality eventually make a compromise the right thing for everyone. Most importantly, if the situation goes sideways in court, the vindictiveness that flows from mounting a defense so aggressive that it includes suing the alleged victim of misconduct can spark a runaway jury, since it makes the defendant seem like someone who would indeed engage in predatory behavior.

In Brown’s case, the best move will be to refrain from filing a countersuit. The best move would be to defend the case on the merits, without trying to exact revenge in a way that will potentially make him look mean, aggressive, and ultimately capable of the things he’s accused of doing.

While for some lawyers a countersuit becomes a standard approach to defending a client because it potentially scares away a plaintiff and/or softens the plaintiff up to take less money in settlement, in a situation like this there are other angles to consider. Britney Taylor already has made clear her willingness to cooperate with the NFL, and the NFL already has said it will investigate. Hollow threats of countersuits may serve only to strengthen her resolve to share her experience with the league office — which could make it more difficult for Brown to avoid punishment from the league, and potentially banishment from the Patriots.

Or maybe it really will scare her away, if she’s not telling the truth about Brown. Still, if she’s not telling the truth about Brown, it’s far better to focus on proving that her story is wrong than trying to bully her into submission.

81 responses to “Antonio Brown’s lawyer promises a countersuit against Brown’s accuser

  1. They aren’t going to file. It provides a meaningless sound bite that can be parroted by the media.

    Odell Beckham is going to have to do more than wear a half million dollar watch during a game to get in the news this week. This is AB’s news cycle.

  2. Between this woman, the fines, and agent and lawyers fees, AB will be spending his money as fast as it comes in.

  3. I’m at a Pats fan but at this point I just want the NFL to put him on the Exempt List and let him sit out for awhile. I was never in favor of signing this guy in the first place but that was only because of the drama he created in Oakland. Now you add this to it, which honestly I don’t know if he’s guilty of rape or if this is just a money grab by her, but either way just get him away from the NFL for now. The NFL doesn’t need him and the Patriots definitely don’t need him either

  4. Good insight on what goes on behind the scenes with a client and you, the lawyer.

    Should the right way to do things be first prove your innocence AND THEN file a counter suite? It seems like if you just say you are going to sue the pants off someone without defending yourself first, it’s throwing money at the problem.

  5. I urge everyone to check out the text messages that he left this woman (they are out there). That dude is broken. Like, legit mentally broken. I know what the Patriots were thinking when they signed him, but for the first time I think BB has no idea what he’s gotten into.

  6. This needs to be gotten to the bottom of before people start declaring sides. It’s not a football issue so that should (should) have no bearing for anyone. If he is guilty, even just the tiniest bit, then nail him. He should not just be out of football but criminal charges really should be pursued if that turns out to be the case. But if this does turn out to just be a money grab or (because this timing is even more suspicious than the signing was) someone trying to stop him from playing (which might work, the Patriots might have to hold him back, not punish, but not use either, until this gets settled one way or another) then the people doing it need to be thoroughly punished because thats just sports being taken way too far.

  7. At this point nobody but Brown and this girl know the truth. If she is telling the truth, he will probably still come out of it ok because he has money for high priced lawyers and will unfairly make her life miserable. This doesn’t look good though with his history of narcissistic behavior. If he did do this I hope he has to pay for it. If he didn’t, Hopefully the truth comes out. Most likely scenario, we will never truly know the truth. He said, she said.

  8. I wasn’t there, so I don’t know. I will wait for those involved to sort it out.

    I really hope the rest of us do too, in order to respect both the accuser and the accused.

  9. all good advice I’m sure but in how many of your clients was the lawsuit literally the final straw to break the camel’s back.

  10. It creates harder feelings? She didn’t go to the cops, she’s belatedly accused him of assaults & rape, and running to the NFL & court of public opinion after he refused to pay her off, I doubt his countersuing will make matters much worse between them.

  11. AB is no doubt a scumbag, but this smells like a money grab. Why not press criminal charges if he sexually assaulted you? Either way, the Pats will be fine ..they’re loaded with or without him.

  12. Really good stuff. This is the best argument against a countersuit that I’ve ever seen in print. I’d like to think that AB’s team would heed the author’s advice, but I highly doubt it.

  13. I always look at it as innocent until proven guilty, but how this guy is in life, I’m going with guilty right away. Look at how he handled a helmet issue, and team issue. He obviously thinks he is above everything in life.

  14. Gotta love how this chic waited until the day Brown thought everything was golden, he’s a Patriot now, etc. After all the BS he put the Raiders through for no reason, this couldn’t have happened to a more deserving idiot. Antonio Brown, LOL.

  15. As much as I’m not liking this guy and his antics right now, this does have the smell of a cash grab situation.

    Ladies, if you’ve been a victim of sexual violence, you need to come out the NEXT DAY and report it. I know I’m sounding flippant and not all scenarios are the same, but coming out a year or two later and saying oh, this person did this to me, my first question is going, “did you report it?”

  16. I respectfully disagree. Sometimes the point isn’t about extracting money from a false accuser, it has to do with principle. I know that’s shocking to say in relation to AB but if he is being falsely accused then it isn’t wrong for him (nor is it bad from a strategy perspective) to exercise all remedies available to him, even if it costs him more than he gets (which is pretty much always the case when it comes to principles). After reading the filing, what isn’t stated is that she went to the police and reported either alleged incident or went to a hospital. Something seems off.

  17. Steelers 1 – Raiders 0
    AB 1 – Raiders 0
    Patriots/AB/Raiders 1 – Steelers 0
    Raiders/Steelers 1 – Patriots/AB 0
    Rest of the leauge 100 – Patriots/ AB 0

  18. Articles like this are why Florio and PFT is the best. Your average rube (myself included) has no idea of this side of a lawsuit and PFT explains it beautifully.

  19. What does Tom Brady do here? I think he’s letting Brown stay at his place and snapped a pic with his new roommate and shared it on social media. Tom is married and has kids. I don’t know if Brown did what he is accused of but the text messages themselves are horrible and this puts Brady in a weird position.

  20. 1) At this point he’s “she said, he said”

    2) I have less than 0 faith whatsoever in an NFL investigation, and any sane reasoning NFL fan feels the same way

    3) If he’s guilty – he should never play another game in the NFL

    4) I have less than 0 faith whatsoever in an NFL investigation, and any sane reasoning NFL fan feels the same way

    5) If he’s innocent there should be repercussions against the acccuser

    6) I have less than 0 faith whatsoever in an NFL investigation, and any sane reasoning NFL fan feels the same way

  21. Short of her admitting that she’s lying (no idea if she is) – HOW is Brown supposed to prove his innocence? It’s her word against his, after all – and we know how courts decide when that is the case. There are things working against her though – she kept in contact with Brown after the alleged events occurred – uhh, why? If what’s been going on isn’t consensual, why are you putting yourself in the position again and again? Also, has to be said – Brown getting a contract and sued SAME DAY by her – that doesn’t exactly scream “this is about justice”.

  22. pftthoughtpolicemostwanted says:
    September 11, 2019 at 7:30 am
    How is counter suing rarely a good impulse? I think it is a fantastic and most deserving impulse

    It’s not a good impulse if you are guilty, its in fact the stupidest thing you could do because (as the author points out) it just ratchets up the vindictiveness of the injured party. But it is a good impulse if you are completely innocent and the other person is just trying to abuse the court process. So for anyone to say its a bad tactic also indicates that they have already made their own determination on the accusation itself.

  23. Only time will tell if this is true or not. But, as many of us said, welcome to distraction land, Patriots! You signed him, now deal with it.

  24. To me he has seemed mentally ill and or unstable for awhile. I am shocked he did not have real consequences from the hotel incident or the reckless speeding, but if I was on the jury, just with the info in the cmmplaint, all I would find him guilty of is being an A-hole. Every word in it may be true, but his lawyer knows how it reads, that’s why he’s threatening to countersue. At minimum, she seems to have had a ton of time and opportunity to cease contact with him, yet never did.

  25. This is probably the only time i ever agreed with AB. this is a straight money grab. Why would you stay someones trainer for over a year after the supposed first sexual assault, then supposedly allow it too happen 2 more times and never call the cops.

  26. Indybear says:
    September 11, 2019 at 6:43 am

    Mike Brown
    Charlie Brown
    Bad Bad Leroy Brown
    The Browns
    Antonio Brown

    Today’s lesson. Don’t be a Brown.


    Tim Brown was a great player and is a great person so your theory is flawed.

  27. Thank you for the legal clarification and rationale for not counter-suing..if he is guilty of this, I hope he gets what he deserves….what is frustrating is that if it is really a “money grab” and simply not true….what recourse (if any) does someone have for being falsely accused of a terrible crime and the damage it does to them personally?

  28. officialgame says:

    September 11, 2019 at 6:56 am

    Wow, what a surprise, Brown hired an aggressive lawyer. Shocked!

    If i was being falsely accused of something that could cause me to lose my job and possibly face jail time i would too. So would you if faced with it.

  29. billswillalwayssuck says:

    September 11, 2019 at 9:00 am

    Indybear says:
    September 11, 2019 at 6:43 am

    Mike Brown
    Charlie Brown
    Bad Bad Leroy Brown
    The Browns
    Antonio Brown

    Today’s lesson. Don’t be a Brown.


    Tim Brown was a great player and is a great person so your theory is flawed.


    Troy Brown too

  30. For all the hate Bruce Allen gets , we should as a collective fan base thank him for not even taking a sniff at this guy.

  31. We Pats fans had to know that something would fly out of the Pandora’s box that follows AB. This charge shouldn’t be that surprising. BTW his lawyer reminds me of Kramer’s lawyer when he spilled the coffee on himself. The charge was “Outrageous, egregious, preposterous” was the first thing he told AB.

  32. Saying youre countersuing sounds like someone who’s trying to overcompensate in their attempts to sound innocent.

  33. If there is any merit to this woman’s claims, AB should not only be banned from the NFL, he should be indicted and if found guilty he should serve time in prison.

  34. What are the chances that Brown has hired a sane attorney? So who knows what strategy will be employed. From the outside, it appears like being rational would DQ one from entering Brown’s universe. Brown’s alleged sexual proclivities and other anti-social behaviors aside, I do have questions about this case. I don’t know what happened and I am not minimizing the impact of said behavior. For instance, why would this woman return to his employ(?) on more than one occasion after some of his antics? It is a human frailty that leads some people to want to bask in the reflected glory of celebrity. Celebrity is not a virtue. And worshipping celebrities gets you nowhere.

  35. My assumption would be that Browns lawyer is telling him everything that he wants to hear weather its good or bad for him. Pretty much the way this guy is used to being treated.

  36. Here’s part of what his lawyer is going to state. Why did you zoom by this?

    Mr. Brown was approached by his accuser in 2017, shortly after Mr. Brown signed a contract making him the highest-paid wide receiver in the NFL. At that time, Mr. Brown was asked to invest $1.6 million dollars in the accuser’s business project.

    Mr. Brown was not informed by his accuser that she had just been levied with a $30,000 IRS tax lien or that $300,000 of the $1.6 million so called “investment” was to be used to purchase property already owned by the accuser and her mother.

  37. “Brown has lost credibility. Even if he is innocent of this accusation, he is going to have a hard time in proving it.”

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
    Brown doesn’t have to prove his innocence. It’s up to her to prove his guilt. By the way, it’s not possible to prove a negative. I cannot prove that mermaids do not exist.

  38. tylawspick6 says:
    September 11, 2019 at 9:34 am
    Goodell never quits..His cheating is amazing with which angles he uses.

    This gal just woke up and her lawyers concocted this since NE signed him?


    Exhibit A why Pats Haters say you wear a tinfoil hat. You need to stop with the Goodell angle. Its embarrassing to all of us Pats fans.

  39. ak185 says:
    September 11, 2019 at 7:35 am
    I wasn’t there, so I don’t know. I will wait for those involved to sort it out.

    I really hope the rest of us do too, in order to respect both the accuser and the accused.

    Read his text messages. He seems like a really great, well read, educated man

  40. Here is what bothers me on the money grab angle. If I am looking to score I am suing for 1 million hopefully I can settle for 100k never having to go to court. Also before I sue I would have contacted his lawyer and ask for a settlement. Only asking for $75,000 sounds more like I am getting my revenge now for what you did before.

  41. “Exhibit A why Pats Haters say you wear a tinfoil hat. You need to stop with the Goodell angle. Its embarrassing to all of us Pats fans.”

    I think that guy says the things he does to get people to pay attention to him.

  42. You never know just how these types of cases will go; have worked many of them over the years.

    Had one where the client swore that he did not rape the woman. The victim had filed a police report and also took a poly that she passed. However, our investigation revealed that she had done this before and was charged for filing a false police report. We also found instances where she had tried to extort cash from males in several states for the same thing. We felt good about our client getting off clean.

    Before writing our conclusions, we requested that our client submit to a poly just to tidy things up. On the day he was to take the poly, he arrived sweating like a pig. At the conclusion of the test, our examiner told us that he was lying. We confronted him and he admitted his guilt. (And they go the other way as well.)

  43. itsnotcheese2934 says:
    If i was being falsely accused of something that could cause me to lose my job and possibly face jail time i would too. So would you if faced with it.

    –Falsely accused? Maybe, if he didn’t decide to throw it in her face through text messages.

  44. But what will he get out of that? Monetary compensation? She doesn’t have money that’s why she’s going after him.

  45. I am going to change my screen name to betting man but here is my next wager…. I bet this will be settled by mutual agreement and both sided will sign a non disclosure agreement and this will never be heard from again.But the real world problem with this solution which is always the solution in this case is justice is not served. Did he assault her? No one will ever no. Is she falsely accusing him him? No one will never know. The loser in this is always justice. But in the end both sides will look at this and say how much do you need to make this go away. We have all seen it before.

  46. AB should get around 15-20 snaps this week vs Miami to get acquainted with the offense. Some simple patterns opposite Gordon & Edelman & White would make any Defense cringe.
    His value really kicks in from week 8 thru 13 when they Play AT Ravens, Eagles & Texans while hosting Cowboys & Chiefs.
    Wow. Exciting times in bv the NFL !

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.