When allegations of workplace impropriety, which included the sexual harassment of female employees and the use of racial slurs, were levied against Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson late last year, the NFL quickly responded by launching an investigation.
But according to NBC Sports, a letter written by a former Panthers employee to Sports Illustrated calls that investigation a “farce” in that the league offers zero protection for those employees wishing to break non-disclosure agreements placed upon them as part of a financial settlement Richardson reached with the victims. The anonymous employee is bound by such an NDA, but said she decided to violate those terms by writing the letter after Richardson broke the agreement when he spoke to other owners about what happened.
The employee says in her letter that on several occasions she received handwritten notes from Richardson in which he made inappropriate suggestions. He sometimes even went a step farther, she said.
“I didn’t know what to do when you summoned me to your personal office, instructed me to sit in the chair across from you, pulled my chair towards you so you could sandwich my legs, which you proceeded to rub, between yours,” she wrote. “…I didn’t know what to do when you brushed my breasts to put my seat belt around me in the front seat of your car. I didn’t know what to do when you put your hands on my mouth, for me to kiss them. I didn’t know what to do when you asked me uncomfortable, sexually charged questions.”
Richardson reportedly did not respond to a request for a comment about the letter. Panthers officials said they have “taken the appropriate steps to remediate any misconduct and ensure a safe and comfortable work environment.”