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Witnesses: Michael Irvin’s meeting with a woman was amicable


DALLAS (AP) — Two men who were in the lobby of a Phoenix hotel the night Michael Irvin, the Hall of Fame recipient, was accused of misconduct with a female employee, said Wednesday that they saw him do nothing wrong. do and that his brief interaction with the woman seemed friendly.

Phil Watkins of Australia and Bryn Davis of Philadelphia appeared at a press conference via video link with Irvin and his lawyer.

Irvin has filed a $100 million defamation lawsuit against a “Jane Doe” and Marriott International Inc.claiming that a February 5 false misconduct claim caused him to be kicked out of the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel hotel and removed from the NFL Network’s Super Bowl week coverage.

Watkins said he saw “nothing at all” that could be considered inappropriate, and that Irvin and the woman shook hands and laughed.

“There was nothing unpleasant about the interaction,” and Irvin soon left for the elevator as the woman headed back to the bar, Watkins said.

Irvin has maintained that he did nothing wrong during the encounter with the woman and went to his room alone. He has said there was no inappropriate physical contact.

Irvin’s attorney, Levi McCathern, complained that Marriott did not provide him with sufficient video footage of the meeting. McCathern said he was allowed to watch a short video in Marriott law offices on Tuesday, but was not allowed to take or make a copy.

The video showed Irvin and the woman meeting and shaking hands, and Irvin touched her elbow twice before leaving, McCathern said.

McCathern said he asked a judge to order Marriott to give him a copy.

“The allegations are nonsense,” McCathern said. “We need to get Michael back to work immediately, and I think Renaissance should apologize.”

Marriott officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Irvin, who seemed to burst into tears during the new conference, complained that he was not yet allowed to see the video. And he compared the allegations and the resulting fallout to the persecution of black men in the Jim Crow era.

“I couldn’t even tell you what she looked like,” Irvin said. “This just amazes me, that in 2023 we are still dragging and hanging brothers from a tree.”


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Joanna Swanson

Joanna Swanson is Europe correspondent at the Thomson Reuters Foundation based in Brussels covering politics, culture, business, climate change, society, economies and inclusive tech. With specific focus in breaking news, she has covered some of the world's most significant stories.