In the Houston Texans Deshaun Watson / Tony Buzbee Lawsuit story, the zeal with which some media have taken the now 20 filed but not verified lawsuits and used them to publish smut soft-core porn stories is disturbing. And worse yet, are the lengths some publications go through to get their sources in an effort to justify the lawsuits the Houston Police Department has repeated said do not come with a shred of evidence. Take Sports Illustrated‘s post called “A Massage Therapist on Her Session With Deshaun Watson”.
In reading it, I took note that the author explained that:
Mary, though, is not one of Buzbee’s plaintiffs; Sports Illustrated initiated contact with her before learning she had worked with Watson, a session that predates the timelines detailed in any of the lawsuits filed. She is a licensed massage therapist who owns her own business in Houston (SI agreed to Mary’s request for anonymity to protect her privacy and her business; we are referring to her by an alias). She told SI she is sharing a public testimony, her account of Watson’s behavior, with the hope of preventing this from happening to any other professionals in her industry. In an effort to corroborate Mary’s account, SI reviewed text and social media messages, and interviewed a family member Mary spoke to in the immediate aftermath of the session—that family member’s account was consistent with Mary’s.
In this rush for a number of publications to jump on the bandwagon of sexual assault, care is commonly tossed aside for sensationalism. In the case of Deshaun Watson, what I find alarming is the reckless behavior of media outlets: not questioning Houston Super Lawyer Tony Buzbee, and assuming that the so-called women clients of Buzbee are real just because he says they are. All of this makes me think of what Fred Lane, Jr. experienced.
Fred Lane Jr Was An NFL Running Back For The Carolina Panthers And Indianapolis Colts
Fred Lane, Jr. played for the Carolina Panthers and Indianapolis Colts from 1997 to 2000. He signed with the Panthers as an undrafted free agent ahead of the 1997 season. Given little chance, Fred Jr. emerged to become an effective player, and his career was about to really take off after being traded to the Colts, and the chance of playing with Peyton Manning. Only, that never happened because of his evil wife, Dedra Lane.
The family warned Fred Jr. about Dedra before their pairing, and after their marriage, she managed to keep Fred Jr. away from the family. Then, she shot Fred Jr and made a 9-11 call that he would not leave her alone. She accused him of domestic violence. Now, imagine if that happened in 2020: TMZ would have ran the 9-11 call, and publications like Sports Illustrated would have rushed to tell Dedra’s story. Fred Jr. would effectively have been killed twice: once by his wife and once by the press. Like the Deshaun Watson story, the press would not wait for court, and would rush to make up a story about Fred Jr.
The truth is that his family knew Dedra was bad and trying to take Fred Jr.’s money. Thankfully, prosecuting lawyers were able to assemble evidence to try and convict Dedra. As far as I am concerned, she made a deal of a guilty plea for voluntary manslaughter in 2003, when it should have been murder. Deidra Lane served a a sentence of seven years and 11 months – but as far as I am concerned it should have been for life. The judge ruled that her actions were premeditated and deliberate. Moreover, she robbed a bank before she killed Fred Jr., and the belief was she did not want him to go to the authorities and turn her in. For all of that, she walks free.
Fred Lane Jr. was my cousin. At the time of the year of his death, and just two months before, I talked to him about what I was working on, bringing the Super Bowl to Oakland, and said we had to get him involved, but either way, I would see him later. That did not happen.
It’s for that reason, the murder of my cousin, that I look at stories of NFL players accused of domestic violence or sexual assault but without proof with a questioning eye. I can’t help it. It’s not about “believing the woman” but getting to the truths of a case, and today’s news and social media environment makes that harder to do. There are way too many women who prey on black NFL players for money, and way too few stories about the problem. The white-dominated press consistently sends the message that black NFL players lives don’t matter. I, for one, have had enough of it.
It’s with that eye that I read the Sports Illustrated post, and this part:
Sports Illustrated initiated contact with her before learning she had worked with Watson, a session that predates the timelines detailed in any of the lawsuits filed.
Since there’s no record of Sports Illustrated talking to any massage therapist in the Antonio Brown matter, I ruled out that they had a prior contact with her. Then, Sports Illustrated said the woman called “Mary” had contacted Tony Buzbee, but turned down working with his firm against Watson, declining to sign a contract.
What sticks out to me is that this story comes up just a week or so after the news that a woman who was one of Buzbee’s accusers was trying to blackmail him for $30,000. And now, the brand new news that Buzbee himelf is not going to the Houston Police Department and for reasons that are complicated, political, and at best questionable. Plus, the Sports Illustrated story has the same look as the others in the lawsuit. Thinking the unthinkable, is it possible she and Buzbee got together to form media talking points?
Massage therapists took a massive hit during the Pandemic, so this is beginning to look like a shakedown for money. When I first considered that, I checked to see if Sports Illustrated said it did not pay “Mary” for her story. I saw no such disclaimer. I then contacted the author of the story on Twitter and by email – no response.
I am a blogger, not a journalist, so I do not claim objectivity. From my position, its easier to watch and learn that many who say they’re journalists act more like bloggers. There is a larger story here that Sports Illustrated misses and its huge.
In 2015, Texas Christian University political science professor and human trafficking expert Vanessa Bouche wrote in a study on the Houston massage parlor market and sex trafficking, that she found 207 active illicit massage parlors, after reading online reviews. What’s the chance that Mary’s Houston business was one of them?
Then, the blogger John T Floyd reported:
Then, in December 2015, Bouche chose 32 of these parlors to look at more closely. She installed hidden cameras on streets near the parlors’ entrances to collect 24-hour surveillance footage.
Based on this footage, Bouche discovered a number of details:
Every day, an estimated 2,869 men visit illegal massage parlors in Houston.
The men spend anywhere from $50 to $100 for the sexual services they receive.
A majority of these massage parlors are located in strip malls out in the suburbs.
The busiest time for these massage parlors is between noon and 4 p.m.
In the Sports Illustrated account, the author writes “Mary makes clear that Watson did not touch her, nor did he force her into conducting any sexual acts.” But, if she runs a massage parlor in Houston, the fair question is what does she do for clients that could be considered entrapment? And is the real issue not getting enough money from Deshawn Watson – if he was ever really there? The Sports Illustrated account did not ask about money, nor did it attempt to follow the money, but its clear it looks like it paid Mary some money.
Given that, and the new fact that Tony Buzbee has said he will not go to the police, after saying he would go to the police, it’s hard for me to not believe this is a shakedown on Deshaun Watson as part of an attempt to ruin his NFL value – all because he wanted say in who the organization hired as its coach.
Stay tuned. In the name of Fred Lane, Jr.
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