On the heels of a pair of victories in court on the question of whether the women suing Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson would be required to disclose their names, attorney Rusty Hardin held a press conference regarding the case.
Hardin admitted that consensual sexual encounters sometimes occurred with massage therapists. Hardin insists, however, that he did not coerce the massage therapists or use his status as a celebrity to violate the ability of the massage therapists to provide consent.
Hardin repeatedly expressed disappointment and frustration with attorney Tony Buzbee’s efforts to try the case through the media. However, Hardin also did the exact same thing during the press conference, introducing multiple colleagues who vouched for Watson’s character and innocence based on their interactions with him since Hardin’s firm was hired more than three weeks ago.
Likewise, Hardin described the entire situation as a “new model for extortion,” and he reiterated the attack on Ashley Solis for making a settlement demand of $100,000 and then claiming earlier this week that she is not proceeding with a civil lawsuit “just for money.”
For the 22 civil lawsuits filed against Watson, these cases will come down to whether the jury believes Watson (assuming he testifies) or the accuser. With a very low standard of proof in civil court, it will be very difficult as a practical matter for Watson to prevail in 22 different cases.