Twenty-one civil cases filed against the Houston Texans’ Deshaun Watson through Wednesday accuse him of a range of actions during massage appointments over the past year, from refusing to cover his genitals to forced oral sex. Watson has denied the allegations in the lawsuits, which do not name any of the women. A summary of the alleged behavior, according to the lawsuits:
Multiple occasions in 2020. The plaintiff, a licensed therapist, said she was referred by a mutual friend “sometime in 2020.” The first massage, she says, was at Watson’s house. She says Watson refused customary draping and kept wanting to flip onto his back, and when he did he exposed his penis. The lawsuit says Watson’s penis touched her hand several times. She was uncomfortable but shrugged it off as nerves and agreed to a second session, where she was asked to massage his lower abdomen and groin area, the lawsuit states. Again, she says, Watson caused his penis to touch her hands continuously. She says she decided to do a third massage and Watson again allegedly continuously touched the Plaintiff with his penis. By that session, the lawsuit alleges, “Plaintiff finally concluded that Watson wanted sex.” The plaintiff then fired Watson as a client because she didn’t want to jeopardize her marriage, she says, and she was “terrified of what Watson would do to her career.”
March 30, 2020, at the plaintiff’s home in Texas. The plaintiff has run a massage therapy business since 2018 and is a licensed therapist. He contacted her via direct message on Instagram and insisted no one else be present during his massage. The woman alleges that Watson exposed his penis and touched her hand with his penis. She says she ended the massage abruptly and Watson told her: “I know you have a career and a reputation, and I know you would hate for someone to mess with yours, just like I don’t want anyone messing with mine.” She says he texted later to apologize but she did not respond.
April 19, 2020, at a Houston spa. The plaintiff, a licensed esthetician who owns her skin care business, says she was contacted by Watson via Instagram. During a massage appointment, Watson directed the woman to work on the crevices in his groin area, the lawsuit states. She says when he rolled over onto his back, he had an erection and repeatedly touched her hand with his penis. He ejaculated, leaving the woman “confused and mortified,” the lawsuit states.
May 28, 2020 at Watson’s home in Houston. The plaintiff, a certified personal trainer who did not specialize in massage, says Watson wanted to book with her anyway and told her he wanted to focus on his groin, glutes and lower abdominals. She says the massage took place in a theater room, and that at one point Watson exposed his penis and moved it to her hand. The lawsuit says Watson told her, “I hope you do not mind if we continue the massage like this.” The woman says she started stuttering and said “I do not know. I do not know,” before ending the massage. The plaintiff says she called her mother and best friend that day to tell them what happened, and that Watson texted her the same day asking if she was OK.
June 2, 2020, at a spa in Houston. The plaintiff has been in the massage business about 11 years and is a licensed therapist who routinely works with pro athletes. She says Watson contacted her via Instagram and later by phone, telling her he makes “a lot of massage therapists uncomfortable and it’s really hard for me to find someone who will meet my needs.” During the appointment, the woman says, Watson continually tried to remove towels and exposed his penis multiple times and moved “in such a way to make his penis touch Plaintiff.” The lawsuit says Watson tried to schedule future appointments but was ignored or declined.
June 2020 and Aug. 17, 2020, at a hotel and later a spa in Houston. The plaintiff, who offers bodywork and stretch therapy classes, markets her business through Instagram. She said she initially did not know who Watson was when he contacted her through the manager at a spa where she worked. She met him at a hotel where he was staying, the lawsuit says. She says Watson groped her buttocks and vagina, and she slapped him. She says he later touched her hand with his penis. On Aug. 17, she says, Watson reached out on Instagram, and she didn’t realize the connection to her earlier client until he arrived. The lawsuit says Watson apologized for his earlier behavior but during the appointment exposed himself, forced the woman’s mouth onto his penis and masturbated in front of her.
July 2020 at the plaintiff’s house in Houston. The plaintiff offered Watson a teeth whitening and sauna detox when he originally reached out via Instagram for a massage. Later, by telephone, Watson asked about Swedish massage, and she said she would try to learn it before his appointment, according to the lawsuit. During the appointment, the woman says, Watson lay naked on his stomach and told her to massage the area underneath his genitals and anus before flipping onto his back. The lawsuit states that as the plaintiff massaged his groin, Watson ejaculated on her face and body. She says he then took her hand and had it touch his penis. The woman called a friend later that day to say what had happened because, she says, she was in shock.
July 7, 2020, at the plaintiff’s place of business in Scottsdale, Ariz. The lawsuit says Watson connected with the plaintiff through a mutual friend who is a yoga instructor. Ten minutes into the massage, the suit alleges, Watson told the woman to focus on his glutes. She says he asked her to penetrate his anus with her fingers, and she refused. Watson ended the massage after no more than 35 minutes, paid and left, the lawsuit says.
July 15, 2020 at a home in Beverly Hills, Calif. The plaintiff, a licensed massage therapist, says Watson contacted her on Instagram. He later gave her an address to a house in Beverly Hills where she was to meet him, the lawsuit says. When she arrived, she says, she was led to a room where Watson locked the door. The plaintiff says she took out mace, and Watson laughed but didn’t say anything. When the massage started, the lawsuit states, Watson asked her to massage his glutes and pointed to his anus, and the plaintiff refused. When Watson flipped over, he had an erection covered by a towel, which he removed, the plaintiff says. She says Watson grabbed her hands and moved them toward his genitals and forced her hands onto his penis. Afterward, she says, he told her, “I will not have you sign a NDA but don’t ever talk about this.”
From July to September 2020, in Texas. Watson initially reached out to the woman via Snapchat direct message, the plaintiff says. In each massage, the lawsuit alleges, Watson escalated his behavior, in one case touching the woman’s hand to his penis and another stroking her buttocks and rubbing her leg. In one massage, the woman says, he moved his penis to her hand before ejaculating on her hand and arms. After a third session, the suit alleges, Watson inundated her with messages trying to schedule another massage and, feeling trapped, she agreed to a fourth session where he instructed her how he wanted his penis rubbed and glided her hand over his genitals. The plaintiff says Watson coerced her into oral sex, and she declined his further attempts to schedule appointments. She says she told her ex-boyfriend about the alleged incidents after the fourth session. The lawsuit also alleges Watson has “unsent,” or rescinded, Instagram messages and has been contacting women, through intermediaries, who previously provided him massages.
Aug. 2, 2020, at a hotel in Houston. The plaintiff offers various wellness services in homes, hotels and offices. Watson allegedly contacted her b
y Instagram to set up an appointment. The woman says that, during the session, Watson repeatedly asked if he could be naked and demanded she focus on the buttocks. The lawsuit alleges that Watson told the plaintiff he wanted her to touch his anus with her fingers. After the session, according to the lawsuit, Watson was naked in the room when the plaintiff returned from washing her hands and he allegedly asked if she did more than just professional work “for more money.” The woman says she immediately declined and told him to leave. Due to the incident, she left the profession, the lawsuit states.
Aug. 28, 2020, at the Houstonian Hotel. The plaintiff has owned a massage therapy business in Atlanta since 2019. She says Watson contacted her via Instagram and flew her to Houston for his appointment. The woman says Watson tried to get her to touch his genitals and exposed himself. She said she ended the massage and Watson grabbed her hand and arm and said, ‘It is OK. It is OK.’ She said she pulled away. When Watson went to shower, she says, she left for the airport and did not respond to later requests from Watson.
Several encounters between Sept. 9, 2020, and October 2020 at a spa in Houston. The plaintiff, a licensed esthetician of nine years, offers back treatments and body scrubs. In one session, the lawsuit says, Watson asked the woman “what she would do about his erection.” She told him his behavior was inappropriate, the lawsuit says. In an October session, she says, Watson tried to put his penis in the plaintiff’s hand so she would touch it and moved his body so his penis would touch her hand. She says he insisted she focus on his groin, complained she was wearing too many clothes and tried to kiss her. The woman says she cut the second session short and Watson left.
Sept. 24, 2020, at a rented room in a Houston salon. The plaintiff, who owns her own fitness company and offers body conditioning and wellness therapy, says Watson contacted her on Instagram. She said Watson asked if it was OK if he got naked and “if he got aroused.” Later, she says, he moved his body to have his penis touch her hand. She said she moved away and Watson then ejaculated. The lawsuit says the woman “felt violated and disgusted” and immediately stopped the session.
Oct. 19, 2020, at the plaintiff’s office in Houston. The lawsuit says Watson contacted the woman via Instagram. When the plaintiff, a licensed therapist, massaged Watson’s glutes, he allegedly asked her to “go deeper.” The woman says she felt uncomfortable and stayed on his legs, and also declined Watson’s request to use hands instead of elbows. When Watson turned on his back, he was completely naked with his penis exposed, she says. Watson allegedly told her to “go further” and use her hands on the inside of his legs, and she declined. She says Watson offered extra money and said “Don’t worry no one is going to know.” The lawsuit also claims “as a result of the repeated lawsuits against him, Watson is deleting Instagram messages, and contacting those who formally provided him massages, in an attempt to settle.”
Two sessions — Oct. 19 and around Nov. 2, 2020 — at the plaintiff’s office in Houston. The woman owns a bodywork and stretch therapy company and had been open around six months. She said Watson contacted her on Instagram. In the first session, she says, Watson wanted her to work on his inner thighs. She said she doesn’t “do that kind of work,” but she did after he insisted, according to the lawsuit. During the second session, Watson kissed the plaintiff when he arrived, she says. She was shocked and left the office quickly to compose herself, and when she returned he exposed himself, the lawsuit says. Later, she says, Watson asked her to work on his buttocks and penis area but she declined. The lawsuit says he moved in a way to have his penis touch her hand and offered to pay extra if she worked on his buttocks and penis. She says when she declined, Watson got upset and left.
Oct. 8, 2020, at a spa in Houston. The plaintiff says she had never given a massage at this spa before, and her boss had assigned her to Watson, whom she said might require a non-disclosure agreement to be signed. She did not sign an NDA. When the massage began, the plaintiff says, she started massaging Watson’s lower legs, as her boss instructed. Watson later turned over and exposed his penis, the lawsuit states, and the woman continued massaging his inner thigh, lower stomach and sides as he instructed. Because his penis was exposed, the woman says, she had to brush against it during the massage. The suit says Watson told her not to be afraid to touch him, and the plaintiff responded that she was not paid to do that. She says he told her that’s what he paid for, and that he left, paying only a third of what he was supposed to pay her.
Nov. 6 and Nov. 10, 2020, in Pearland, Texas. The plaintiff, a flight attendant who was studying massage therapy, says she knew Watson through mutual friends. He reached out to her via Instagram. The lawsuit says Watson wanted to do the first session at a hotel, but the plaintiff declined, and he offered to drive to her mother’s house. Before the session, she says, Watson texted her that, “I even have a NDA I have therapist [sic] sign too.” Watson allegedly left the NDA on a table. She says Watson was very aggressive and wanted her to massage his anus, and she declined. The lawsuit says he flipped onto his back and his penis was exposed, and he tried directing her to his groin. Minutes after the massage, she says, he texted her, saying, “Hope that wasn’t bad.” The next day at 7 a.m., he allegedly texted for another session. She alleges similar activity and says Watson ejaculated on her. She says he subsequently asked “incessantly for another massage and she declined. The woman says she reached out to a friend in the NFL and told him what happened, and that player “told there is a thin line between physical therapy and sexual pleasure. The NFL player said Watson crossed that line over into sexual pleasure.”
Dec. 28, 2020, at a Houston office building. The woman, a licensed massage therapist since 2018, says Watson contacted her through Instagram. During the session, she says, Watson instructed her to slide her hands across his genitals. The woman says she started shaking and felt intimidated and threatened. The lawsuit says that he forced the woman to have oral sex and that she blacked out for a few minutes from fear. She says Watson then got dressed and left.
Jan. 21, 2021, in Houston. The plaintiff, a licensed massage therapist who owns her own business in Houston, says Watson contacted her on Instagram. As the massage started, she says, Watson asked if he could remove draping because he gets hot. The woman says she told Watson that he would have to remain partially covered and that the massage was strictly professional. The lawsuit says he exposed his erect penis and caused it to touch her hand.
March 5, 2021, at a massage therapy business in Sandy Springs, Georgia. The plaintiff is a licensed massage therapist who owns her own business. She says Watson contacted her on Instagram about a $55 discount massage she was offering. During the massage, she says, Watson made her uncomfortable and directed her to his groin area. She refused, and Watson exposed himself and put his penis on her hand, the lawsuit says. She says she was shocked and moved away, and Watson dressed and left.