Report concludes 3 Miami Dolphins 'engaged in pattern of harassment'
Updated On: Feb 15 2014 06:47:14 PM EST
The results of an independent report into allegations of harassment by members of the Miami Dolphins were released Friday.
Among the bullet points:
- Richie Incognito, Mike Pouncey and John Jerry harassed Jonathan Martin, another player and a trainer.
- Martin had been bullied in middle and high school and suffered from depression.
- There was a notebook used to track “fines and offenses” by an offensive line kangaroo court for infractions like arriving late to meetings.
- Players did not heed the Dolphins’ rules of workplace behavior and Dolphins team management did not enforce them.
Click here to read the entire report. (Warning: Vulgar, racist, sexually explicit language)
Nov. 2013 -- RAW VIDEO: Local 10's Ross Palombo catches up with Richie Incognito in LA
The NFL-ordered-investigation found Jonathan Martin was subjected to "a pattern of harassment" that included racist slurs and vicious sexual taunts about his mother and sister by three Miami Dolphin teammates.
The report said Richie Incognito, who the Dolphins suspended in November, offensive linemen John Jerry and Mike Pouncey harassed Martin, as well as another offensive lineman and an assistant trainer.
The inquiry found Martin was routinely taunted and ridiculed. The other player, whose name was not released, was "subjected to homophobic name-calling and improper physical touching," while the assistant trainer was subjected to racial slurs.
The report rejected claims that Martin made up the claims of abuse.
Martin left the team in October, saying he was harassed daily by teammates.
Incognito tweeted out Friday night, "You could not define me in 144 years, let alone 144 pages Mr. Wells. Thank you for your hard work and dedication."
On Friday afternooon, Incognito's attorney, Mark Schamel, responded to the report.
"Mr. Wells' NFL report is replete with errors. The facts do not support a conclusion that Jonathan Martin's mental health, drug use, or on field performance issues were related to the treatment by his teammates. It is disappointing that Mr. Wells would have gotten it so wrong, but not surprising. The truth, as reported by the Dolphins players and as shown by the evidence, is that Jonathan Martin was never bullied by Richie Incognito or any member of the Dolphins Offensive line. We are analyzing the entire report and will release a thorough analysis as soon as it is ready."
A release issued Friday morning noted the following:
"Ted Wells, co-chair of the Litigation Department at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP (“Paul, Weiss”), has released his independent Report to the National Football League concerning allegations of workplace misconduct at the Miami Dolphins.
The Report is the result of an independent investigation led by Mr. Wells into allegations that the abrupt departure of Dolphins starting offensive lineman Jonathan Martin on October 28, 2013, midway through the season, was the result of persistent bullying and harassment by some of his teammates.
A comprehensive investigation, aided by full cooperation from the NFL, the National Football League Players Association and the Miami Dolphins. Paul, Weiss reviewed thousands of voluntarily produced documents, including text messages, emails and team policies, and completed more than 100 interviews, including interviews of all Dolphins players and coaches, key front office personnel, and the team’s owner and chairman.
The Report concludes that three starters on the Dolphins offensive line, Richie Incognito, John Jerry and Mike Pouncey, engaged in a pattern of harassment directed at not only Jonathan Martin, but also another young Dolphins offensive lineman and an assistant trainer. The Report finds that the assistant trainer repeatedly was the object of racial slurs and other racially derogatory language; that the other offensive lineman was subjected to homophobic name-calling and improper physical touching; and that Martin was taunted on a
persistent basis with sexually explicit remarks about his sister and his mother and at times ridiculed with racial insults and other offensive comments.”
The Report rejects any suggestion that Martin manufactured claims of abuse after the fact to cover up an impetuous decision to leave the team. Contemporaneous text messages that Martin sent to his parents and others months before he left the Dolphins—which have never before been made public—corroborate his account that the persistent harassment by his teammates caused him significant emotional distress. The Report concludes that the harassment by Martin’s teammates was a contributing factor in his decision to leave the team, but also finds that Martin’s teammates did not intend to drive Martin from the team or cause him lasting emotional injury."