NFL will not discipline Matt Patricia for resurfaced 1996 arrest
Brian Spurlock | USA TODAY Sports
After a meeting with the NFL, Detroit Lions and Matt Patricia happened last week, it was determined that the newly appointed head coach will not be disciplined for the 1996 sexual assault allegations against him that resurfaced recently.
NFL determined that neither the Lions nor Matt Patricia will be subject to any discipline in regards to previous allegations made against Detroit’s HC, per sources. The league met last week with the Lions and Patricia.
"Our office reviewed the matter with the Lions and Mr. Patricia, and ensured the club engaged in appropriate and thorough hiring practices and that the Coach did not mislead the team during the interview process," league spokesperson Brian McCarthy said in a statement to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero.
"We determined that the Lions handled the interview process in a thoughtful and comprehensive manner and fully and appropriately complied with all applicable employment laws. As we learned from both Mr. Patricia and the Lions, the matter was not part of his employment interview process for job opportunities outside of or within the NFL. He was under no legal or other requirement to raise this issue.
"This is not subject to the personal conduct policy as the allegations occurred well before his affiliation with the NFL."
Patricia spent the last 14 years with the New England Patriots and was hired by the Lions this offseason. It wasn’t until recently that his 1996 arrest resurfaced. The sexual assault charges were dropped after the victim decided not to testify.
Patricia reiterated his innocence in a statement released earlier this month.
“As someone who was falsely accused of this very serious charge over 22 years ago, and never given the opportunity to defend myself and clear my name, I find it incredibly unfair, disappointing, and frustrating that this story would resurface now with the only purpose being to damage my character and reputation. I firmly maintain my innocence, as I have always done.”