(SportsRadio 610) - The Texans are facing a lawsuit connected to the sexual misconduct allegations against former quarterback Deshaun Watson, according to a complaint filed by attorney Tony Buzbee on Monday morning.
In the lawsuit, Buzbee, who represents the two dozen women who sued Watson alleging sexual harassment and assault during massage therapy sessions, says the Texans either knew, or should have known of the star quarterback's activity.
The complaint focuses on a few key aspects as it relates to the Texans. Let's go through them.
Therapists at Genuine Touch, the massage therapy company contracted by the Texans, knew Watson reached out to strangers
Therapists for Genuine Touch were aware of Watson's conduct, according to the lawsuit, which also says at least two of their therapists had sexual relations with Watson during sessions.
"Genuine Touch personnel worked closely with the Houston Texans' staff," the lawsuit states. Individuals from Genuine Touch, the entity contracted to provide massage therapy for the Texans, were well aware of what they described as Watson's "sketchiness" and attempts to push boundaries. The owner of Genuine Touch was aware of what she described as Watson's 'towel trick': that is, Watson's insistence on using a small towel rather than the industry required draping."
The lawsuit also says the owner of Genuine Touch reported to the Texans that Watson had a habit of seeing out "an unusually high number of massages from random strangers on Instagram" but the team did nothing about it.
Texans employees set up Watson with an account at the Houstonian Hotel & Spa, where some incidents occurred
Two high-ranking Texans employees, director of player care and sports medicine Roland Ramirez and executive vice president of football operations Jack Easterby, obtained a membership for Watson at the Houstonian hotel.
The lawsuit accuses Watson of using this membership "to obtain massages that lead to sexual assault."
It does not say Ramirez or Easterby knew if Watson was assaulting anyone, but that the Ramirez, whose name was on the account, "received several complaints from the general manager at the Houstonian regarding Watson and the number of women coming to Watson's room there."
Ramirez also testified in a deposition that he found it strange when Watson borrowed massage tables from the team to take away from the facility, rather than using the team's therapists.
Texans head of security provided Watson with non-disclosure agreement
Nia Smith, who filed the 23rd lawsuit against Watson on May 31, posted an explosive message on social media threatening to expose Watson's behavior. The November 2020 post included a text exchange with Watson, and even his phone number.
Watson took this information to the Texans' head of security, Brent Naccara, a former Secret Service agent. Naccara later provided Watson with a non-disclosure agreement for his future interactions and the lawsuit claims the Texans had the post scrubbed from the internet. How they did so, exactly, is unclear.
But the implication here is that the Texans were aware of Watson's proclivities for massage therapy, his alleged tendency to push the boundaries, and provided him resources to do so.
The plaintiff in this particular lawsuit against the Texans is Toi Garner, the flight attendant profiled by the New York Times who claims Watson drove to her mother's house in Manvel and assaulted her.
Last week, Watson settled 20 of the 24 lawsuits. He is scheduled for a hearing the the NFL's disciplinary officer on Tuesday.
The Texans released the following statement regarding the lawsuit.
"We are aware of the lawsuit filed against us today. Since March 2021, we have fully supported and complied with law enforcement and the various investigations.
"We will continue to take the necessary steps to address the allegations against our organization."
Read the lawsuit in its entirety here: