Panel finds Daniel Snyder interfered with sexual harassment investigation

As the NFL investigated its team for widespread workplace misconduct, Washington Commanders owner Daniel Snyder led a “shadow investigat...


As the NFL investigated its team for widespread workplace misconduct, Washington Commanders owner Daniel Snyder led a “shadow investigation” to interfere and undermine its findings, a congressional committee found.

At Snyder’s request, the committee said, his legal team used private investigators to harass and intimidate witnesses, and created a 100-page dossier targeting victims, witnesses and reporters who had shared “public accusations credible harassment” against the team.

The House Committee on Oversight and Reform released a 29-page memo on Wednesday detailing the findings of its eight-month investigation into how commanders and the NFL handled allegations of rampant sexual harassment by female employees. ‘crew. The report was released ahead of Wednesday’s hearing, where league commissioner Roger Goodell appeared remotely.

Snyder declined two requests to appear, citing a “long-standing business dispute.” During Wednesday’s hearing, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, a New York Democrat and chair of the committee, said she plans to subpoena Snyder to testify next week.

In the memo, Maloney wrote that the panel’s investigation uncovered evidence that Snyder sought to discredit those who made claims against the team and create “an exculpatory narrative” that Snyder was not responsible. misconduct, which allegedly took place. from 2006 to 2019, substantially all of his ownership tenure.

To that end, Snyder and his lawyers also collected thousands of emails from Bruce Allen, who was a Commanders leader from 2009 to 2019, in an attempt to blame Allen for creating a toxic work environment, and sought to influence the NFL’s investigation through direct access to the league and to Beth Wilkinson, the attorney who led the league’s report, according to the memo.

A representative for Snyder said in a statement that the committee’s investigation was “predetermined from the start” and claimed the team addressed these workplace issues “years ago.”

The NFL was aware of Snyder’s actions, the memo says, “but took no meaningful action to prevent them.” Wilkinson’s investigation led the league to impose a $10 million team fine over Snyder and had him removed from day-to-day club operations, but the NFL did not ask Wilkinson to prepare a written report, a decision that attracted the attention of elected officials and former team employees who participated in the investigation.

Goodell told the committee at Wednesday’s hearing that the league had “compelling reasons” for limiting the Wilkinson report to an oral presentation, namely to preserve the confidentiality of its participants. “We’ve been open and direct about the fact that the work culture among commanders has been not only unprofessional, but toxic for far too long,” Goodell said in prepared testimony. He added that there had been a “substantial transformation” of the team’s office and that it “bears no resemblance to the workplace that has been described to this committee”.

The NFL opened a second investigation into the commanders earlier this year, in response to a new sexual harassment allegation that directly implicated Snyder during a congressional roundtable in February. Goodell said the findings of that investigation, led by attorney Mary Jo White, will be made public.

The committee memo also cited additional examples of Snyder’s direct role in creating a workplace that Goodell said was marked by widespread disrespect and harassment. The team’s former chief operating officer told the committee that Snyder “refused to take action” against a coach who allegedly groped a public relations employee and fired female workers who engaged in consensual relationships with male employees of football operations, while the men kept their jobs.

In addition, The Washington Post reported that the Wilkinson Inquiry examined the confidential 2009 settlement of a complaint that Snyder groped an employee and demanded sex from her.

Snyder, his wife, Tanya, and team president Jason Wright sent a statement Wednesday to team employees objecting to the “harsh and negative manner” in which the team had been portrayed and emphasized “significant” changes to remake the culture of the organization. .

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Newsrust - US Top News: Panel finds Daniel Snyder interfered with sexual harassment investigation
Panel finds Daniel Snyder interfered with sexual harassment investigation
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