Sports News

NFL receiver Marshall cleared in civil trial of punching woman

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall was found not liable on Friday following a trial in a lawsuit brought by a California woman who alleged he punched her in the face outside a Manhattan nightclub in 2012.

New York Jets wide receiver and television host Brandon Marshall arrives for a civil trial, with his wife Michi Nogami, at the Manhattan Federal Courthouse in New York April 5, 2016. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

A federal jury in Manhattan found Marshall, 32, not liable for assaulting and battering Christin Myles, 28, who said she suffered a black eye and bruised face following the run-in with the football star while she was out celebrating her birthday.

The jury of nine women and three men delivered the verdict after about an hour of deliberations following a trial that began on Tuesday. Marshall, who attended most of the trial, was not present for the verdict, but his lawyer welcomed it.

“He knew he never touched or punched her, and he was not going to pay a penny to get out of this as he knew he didn’t do anything wrong,” said Harvey Steinberg, Marshall’s lawyer.

Lawyers sat quietly with Myles in the courtroom after the verdict was delivered. Joshua Moskovitz, one of her attorneys, declined comment.

The trial centered largely on grainy security videos that captured both a brawl inside the Marquee nightclub in March 2012 and an encounter between Marshall and Myles later outside.

In his opening statement on Tuesday, Moskovitz told jurors Marshall, at the time playing for the Miami Dolphins, slugged Myles outside the club out of a mistaken belief she had thrown a bottle at his wife.

But Steinberg argued security videos showed the National Football League player did not hit Myles, who he said had previously taken a swipe at Marshall’s friend, former Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Mike Sims-Walker.

Steinberg contended Marshall, who has been named to six Pro Bowls and was the Jets’ most valuable player last season, was trying to keep his distance and assist his wife, who was injured during a brawl inside the club and was waiting for an ambulance.

The defense lawyer pointed to a video that he said showed that another woman struck Myles, who he said blamed Marshall and Sims-Walker for the brawl and ruining her birthday celebration.

Myles went to the police but no charges were brought. She had been seeking damages for pain and suffering but did not specify an amount.

(Correct paragraphs 3 and 7 to trial started Tuesday instead of Monday.)

Reporting by Nate Raymond in New York; Editing by Alistair Bell