Michael Irvin releases footage of hotel encounter at center of $100 million lawsuit against Marriott

After a month of legal maneuvering, former Dallas Cowboys star and Hall of Famer Michael Irvin showed reporters Tuesday security footage from a hotel at the center of his $100 million lawsuit against Marriott.

The video, which Marriott fought to keep from being shown to the public, shows the clash that led to Irvin being fired from his job at the NFL Network a week before Super Bowl LVII over allegations of misconduct by a Marriott employee. owned the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel.

Irwin and his lawyer Levi McCathern showed the video during a press conference, hours after it was revealed they were dropping a lawsuit originally filed in Texas against Marriott to re-file it in Arizona.

The video without sound shows how Irwin approaches the employee and shakes her hand. Over the next few minutes, Irwin can be seen touching the employee’s hand twice, the employee takes a couple of steps back from him, two shaking hands, and then Irwin looks in her direction as she slowly walks away.

Irvin, whose legal team said the video would exonerate him, denies all wrongdoing and alleges in its lawsuit that Marriott tried to “cancel” it, comparing the treatment to a lynching at a previous press conference. He seeks damages for defamation and misconduct.

The re-filed lawsuit also includes six defendants: Marriott International, the Renaissance Hotel Operating Company, its accuser, and three other hotel employees. Terrible announcement.

You can compare this video to how Marriott describes the allegations made by its employees in a petition filed last week. via USA today:

On the night in question, Marriott says Irwin stopped the accuser and “appeared visibly drunk” and began his aggressive behavior towards the employee, shaking her hand, stating she was attractive and asking her if she watched football. .

“Irwin also reached out and touched the Victim’s hand during this conversation without her consent, causing her to step back, feeling visibly uncomfortable. Irvine then asked the Victim if she knew anything about “the big black man inside [her]”, the lawsuit says.

Irwin then tried to grab the victim’s arm again and told him “I’m sorry if he brought back bad memories for her”. The victim withdrew her hand and tried to back away from Irwin, who continued to move towards her.

McCathern's legal partner Levi McCathern speaks at a press conference at the Regency Plaza in Dallas on Tuesday, March 14, 2023.  Following the sexual assault allegation, Michael Irwin (center) and his legal team released surveillance footage at the Phoenix Renaissance Hotel recording his interaction.  with the specified employee.  (Madeleine Cook/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Michael Irwin is suing Marriott after he was excluded from coverage of the NFL Network’s Super Bowl due to a meeting with a hotel employee. (Madeleine Cook/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

In his own account of the incident shortly after it was made public, Irvine said he could not remember the entire conversation because he was drunk and insisted that his only physical contact with the woman was a handshake. Dallas Morning News:

“Honestly, I’m a little puzzled by all this,” Irwin said. “It all happened during a 45-second conversation in the lobby. When I came back after leaving… I went into the lobby and talked to someone. I talked to this girl. I don’t know her and I talked to her for about 45 seconds.

“We shook hands. Then I left. … That’s all what I know.”

“Honestly, I don’t remember that conversation,” Irwin said. “We were drinking. It was just a friendly conversation. ‘How are you?’ I don’t even know. … I am completely at a loss.”

During his press conference on Tuesday, Irwin remembered how he talked to a woman about sports shows in which he participates..

All of this is part of a legal battle that is still in its infancy. Irwin’s team won by releasing the video, but there are always high standards in a libel suit involving a famous person.


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