football

Detroit Lions head coach Matt Patricia maintains innocence over alleged sexual assault

The accusation came while Patricia was in college, but never went to court because alleged victim stated she could not face "the pressures or stress of a trial."


Kahron Spearman


The Detroit Lions have thrown full support behind newly-hired head coach, Matt Patricia, while admitting fault in failing to find a 1996 sexual assault allegation against him during a background check, according to The Detroit News.

 

The accusation came while Patricia was in college at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in upstate New York, where he and teammate were arrested but never charged. The case never went to court because alleged victim stated she could not face "the pressures or stress of a trial."

 

The Lions were unaware of the case until they were contacted by the Detroit News on Wednesday, citing they failed to find the allegation because their background check focused on criminal convictions.

As someone who was falsely accused of this very serious charge over 22 years ago, and never given the opportunity to defend myself and clear my name, I find it incredibly unfair, disappointing, and frustrating that this story would resurface now with the only purpose being to damage my character and reputation.

Matt Patricia
Head coach, Detroit Lions

One question you'd have to ask of Patricia, or any head coach applicant, is whether waiting for the team to find out is the best policy.

 

Additionally, Deadspin found out about the charge by typing Patricia's name into public records database Nexis, which instantly spit out the case. As a near billion-dollar organization, you'd think the Lions would have done their due diligence.

 

Patricia will stay on at Lions head coach, but there's no question, franchises will go deeper into the weeds and taking their time in investigating candidates.

SOU  RCES