Former Los Angeles Clippers star, NBA veteran and current Prime Ticket Clippers’ broadcast analyst Corey Maggette has denied accusations of rape leveled against him by the same woman who has accused Virginia’s lieutenant governor of the same crime.
The woman, Meredith Watson, said the incident occurred 20 years ago at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, and school officials did not pursue the claim, according to a childhood friend of Watson and Facebook messages Watson exchanged with another friend, the New York Times reported.
Maggette denied the accusation in a statement.
“It has only been through media accounts and a statement from Meredith Watson’s lawyer that I first learned or heard of anything about these sexual assault allegations,” Maggette said. “I have never sexually assaulted anyone in my life and I completely and categorically deny any such charge.”
Maggette’s employer, Fox Sports, said it was looking into the claim.
“Fox Sports takes allegations of misconduct seriously, and we are looking into the matter,” the network said in a statement. “We have no further comment at this time.”
Watson’s attorney, Nancy Erika Smith, said in a statement Friday that Watson had been raped by a Duke basketball player during her sophomore year but did not name the player, the New York Times reported. Smith also said that Watson had reported her rape to an unnamed dean at the school, but that the dean had “discouraged her from pursuing the claim further.”
The university has said it is investigating an allegation that a player raped a woman, but declined to comment on the player’s identity or the assertion the school did not act on the accusation, a university spokesman told the newspaper.
“We are in the process of gathering information to determine what policies and procedures were in place during the time period in which these events are alleged to have occurred, and whether they were activated and followed,” said Duke University’s Michael Schoenfeld. “We are not able to provide further information or comment on any individual at this time.”
Watson’s friend, R. Stanton Jones, said in 2001 that Watson told him Maggette had raped her, the Times reported. Jones said he recognized Maggette’s name “because I’m a basketball fan.”
Jones said he came forward now because it “seemed like the right thing to do,” the newspaper reported.
Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski said on Saturday he had “no knowledge” of the situation and only learned about it from reports in the media.
Watson came forward on Friday to accuse Virginia Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax of raping her while both were students at Duke in 2000.
In Facebook messages with a friend released to the New York Times by her spokeswoman, Watson said she did not report the rape and told the friend “You know I didn’t report it after how the university responded when I reported Corey Maggette.”
The Times was not able to verify the authenticity of the messages.
Watson’s accusation against Fairfax followed those of Stanford University professor Vanessa Tyson, who said Wednesday that Fairfax assaulted her during the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston.