Friday, January 28, 2011
Report: Michael Irvin suit settled
A settlement has reportedly been reached in the civil lawsuit that accused former Dallas Cowboys great Michael Irvin of sexual battery.
Irvin's $100 million defamation countersuit will be dropped as part of the settlement, the attorney for the woman who filed the suit said on Friday, according to the Daily Business Review.
The confidential settlement was announced in federal court in Miami, where the lawsuit had been moved in March.
"The parties finally came to their senses," attorney David P. Lister said in court, according to the Daily Business Review. "The settlement was just reached last night."
The woman filed a lawsuit Feb. 4 in Broward County Circuit Court seeking unspecified damages for a sexual assault that allegedly occurred July 4 or 5, 2007, at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood. The Broward State Attorney's office reported almost a year ago that it would not file charges.
The incident was reported to Seminole tribal police on July 20, 2007, but the woman later signed a waiver of prosecution, according to tribe officials.
The Broward State Attorney's office had been investigating the claims, but a spokesman said there was no physical evidence because the woman waited more than two weeks to report the incident.
Irvin, 43, is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame who starred at wide receiver for the Cowboys from 1988 to 1999. The Fort Lauderdale, Fla., native was also a star in college for the University of Miami, playing on the Hurricanes' 1987 national championship team. Irvin is now an analyst for the NFL Network and previously worked for ESPN.
Irvin's attorney, Larry Friedman of Dallas, said last year that Irvin was approached by the woman's lawyer shortly before Irvin was to appear on last season's "Dancing With The Stars" competition. Irvin was told he must pay the woman $1 million, according to Friedman, or a lawsuit would be filed to coincide with the Super Bowl, which was being played Feb. 7, 2010 in Miami.
Friedman called the lawsuit "civil extortion," saying the woman's entire story is false.
According to the woman's lawsuit, Irvin got her drunk and took her to his hotel room where he and another, unidentified man insisted on sexual favors. The woman claims Irvin raped her and the other man forced her to perform oral sex.
Irvin has had previous brushes with the law, including a no-contest plea to a cocaine possession charge in 1996. Later that year, Irvin and another Cowboys player were accused of sexual assault by a woman, but an investigation found the story was false and the woman recanted.
The Associated Press typically does not name alleged sexual assault victims.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.