Another day, another bad headline for the NFL. Roger Goodell's head of security is being accused of assaulting a photographer on a crowded New York City street just two days before the commissioner apologized for the league's lenient discipline in Ray Rice's domestic abuse scandal.
Freelance photographer JB Nicholas told Gothamist.com that Thomas Crowe, the head of security for the NFL's Manhattan office and Goodell's personal bodyguard, assaulted him while staked out in front of NFL headquarters with other reporters on Sept. 17. The harrowing details include being run over by a vehicle before he alleges Crowe punched him in the face.
"Somewhere between 88th and 89th, the truck pulls up alongside me on the passenger side, turns on its windshield wipers and pins me against a double parked car," Nicholas says. "I was knocked off and the truck ran over my foot."
On Park and East 93rd, Nicholas claims the SUV's driver "cut the wheels to the left and gunned it, and knocked me off the bike again."
"[Crowe]'s telling everyone he's a cop, I hold him off with a stiff arm in the intersection and then my phone fell, so I figure I'd just sit down at the end of the flower bed in the median and wait for the cops to come and arrest this guy. Then he tackles me backward and puts his forearm into my neck and starts choking me."
"So I grab his tie and say, 'Stop fucking choking me!' And he loosens up and puts his hand on my diaphragm. That's when I hear sirens, and Crowe says, 'The calvary's coming.'"
Gothamist reports that police at the scene charged Nicholas, not Crowe, with second-degree assault, third-degree assault, and criminal mischief. Nicholas contends that police ignored multiple eyewitnesses who attest that Crowe was the aggressor.
While the details remain murky, the NFL certainly won't be pleased to see media reports of more violence connected to the league.