Michael Irvin, Eric Davis named in second sexual harassment lawsuit against NFL Network
A second sexual harassment lawsuit was filed against the NFL Network where a former employee claims they were "subjected to ongoing and continuing sexual harassment by current and former on-air talent and other employees," according to court papers obtained by USA Today.
In this lawsuit filed Tuesday in Los Angeles Superior Court, Pro Football Hall of Fame receiver Michael Irvin was allegedly told multiple times “not touch” to a makeup artist.
Erin McParland says she worked for the Culver City, Calif-based league network for two years and was subjected to harassment by others, including former cornerback Eric Davis, who would “rub his genitals” against McParland, the lawsuit claims.
“She didn’t want to rock the boat,” Matt McNicholas, one of McParland’s attorneys, said to USA Today. “There was an overall environment — which I guess isn’t hard to imagine when you’re dealing with former high-octane athletes — that was what you might see in a locker room or a fraternity.”
In December, Jami Cantor, a former NFL Network wardrobe stylist, accused former analyst Donovan McNabb, as well as Marshall Faulk, Ike Taylor and Heath Evans and former executive producer Eric Weinberger of various forms of inappropriate sexual behavior.
Faulk, Evans and Taylor were suspended by the network. McNabb and Eric Davis, former NFL Network analysts and current radio hosts for ESPN, have been suspended by ESPN.
Davis and Irvin were named as defendants in this latest lawsuit.
“These communications were laced with sexual innuendo and suggestion which were both inappropriate and offensive,” the lawsuit said. “When the next football season began defendant Eric Davis was able to continue his inappropriate behavior including but not limited to making physical contact.”
McParland detailed her story in a December Sports Illustrated article, in which she says that her and Cantor were harassed by Davis.
"Jami and I shared one of the same abusers: Eric Davis, a former NFL cornerback turned analyst," McParland said. "It started during my second season with the NFL Network with a comment here and there. When Davis came to the makeup room, he would comment on how flexible I was when I leaned down to pick up a product. I brushed such comments off."
McParland says she complained to human resources, but nothing was done until another female made similar allegations.
The lawsuit is seeking "an amount sufficient to punish and make an example of (NFL Network)."