(CBS) In a raw and bizarre press conference Thursday afternoon, Bears receiver Brandon Marshall defended himself against past accusations of domestic violence and blasted ESPN for a profile it ran of him Tuesday night that focused on those allegations and which included a lot of interview footage that had been shot two years ago.
Marshall said that ex-girlfriend Rasheedah Watley and her camp continually demanded money from him following accusations that dated back to at least 2007. He passed out documents to media members that included court testimony, notes from therapy sessions and emails from attorneys to back up his side of the story.
Marshall has already served his penalty for the domestic violence accusations toward him in the form of a three-game suspension back in 2008 (that was reduced to one after winning an appeal), but he’s back in the spotlight after ESPN ran its profile Tuesday and because lawyer Gloria Allred held a press conference Wednesday with family and friends of Watley that provided alleged details of Marshall’s past actions. Allred brought the past up because she’s trying to put more pressure and scrutiny on NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
Marshall demanded an apology from ESPN, saying the outlet framed the narrative against him by not using any of the documents available to it that would’ve supported him. He added that ESPN “sensationalized” the story.
“I try not to get defensive, but I am because it’s been six or seven years and watching that ESPN piece run again, to be depicted as if it was today when it was about two years ago and them sitting in my living room, in front of my wife (and saying) this is about your camp and community, it pissed me off,” Marshall said.
Marshall has been arrested three times after being accused of domestic violence, but he’s never been convicted. He reportedly had at least seven incidents with Watley in which the police had to get involved.
In 2007, Marshall was arrested on suspicion of domestic abuse, but charges were dismissed after he agreed to take anger management counseling. In August 2009, he was found not guilty of misdemeanor battery that stemmed from a March 2008 incident with Watley in a condo in Atlanta. Also in 2009, charges of disorderly conduct after an incident with fiancee Michi Nogami-Campbell (who’s now his wife) were dropped.
On Thursday, Marshall again and again stated everyone needs to let the facts come out before acting as a “judge and jury.”
Marshall showed no remorse toward Watley and didn’t really reflect much on domestic violence victims in general.
The press conference was full of unusual moments. As he blasted ESPN, Marshall claimed he lost $50 million in endorsements and salary over this whole ordeal. He also oddly described a scene in which he said a drunk woman who was throwing up showed up at his residence before she left for a neighbor’s, insinuating that was one of the instances in which an accusation stemmed from.
To open the press conference, Marshall also revealed his mother was physically abused and sexually assaulted when he was a child.
Marshall added he agrees in the NFL’s new six-game suspension (possible indefinite suspension) policy now for domestic violence.