Michael Irvin shows video of encounter with Marriott employee; refiles lawsuit in Arizona

Scooby Axson

For the second time in less than a week, Michael Irvin and his attorney held a press conference to provide an update on their ongoing dispute with Marriott International over the details of an interaction between the Pro Football Hall of Famer and a female hotel staffer.  

Irvin and his attorney announced Tuesday they have filed to have the case dismissed without prejudice in a Texas federal court and refiled in Arizona.

The new case, filed in Arizona Superior Court, lists six defendants, including the accuser, who is referred to as "Ms. Doe," and three other hotel employees.  The other defendants are Marriott International and Renaissance Hotel Operating Company. 

The staffer has accused Irvin of inappropriate behavior, including unwanted touching and crude language during an incident Feb. 5 at Renaissance Phoenix Downtown. Marriott was ordered to provide the name of Irvin's accuser and a video that shows what happened.

Michael Irvin

Following the accusation, the former Dallas Cowboys receiver was subsequently removed from making appearances as an analyst by the NFL Network and ESPN while he was in town for the Super Bowl. 

Irvin, who has since been banned from all Marriott properties in Arizona, according to court documents obtained by USA TODAY Sports, then filed a $100 million lawsuit, claiming defamation and tortious interference in a business relationship, and maintains he did nothing wrong but shake the woman's hand and engage in a conversation that lasted less than two minutes.

"Defendants acted in willful disregard of the severe impact of their false accusations upon Mr. Irvin, his family and his livelihood. The damage caused to Mr. Irvin by Defendants’ actions has been swift and catastrophic, devastating Mr. Irvin personally and professionally," the new lawsuit states. 

"Mr. Irvin brings this action to clear his name in Court and begin the process of trying to restore his reputation and professional career."

During a press conference last week, Irvin's attorney, Levi McCathern, described the details of the video because he was not allowed to record or take the video with him at the time.

But the video encounter was shown during a press conference Tuesday in Dallas. It showed Irvin, numerous witnesses, and the accuser at various points around the hotel bar and lobby.

USA TODAY does not name accusers of sexual assault or misconduct unless they choose to be named.

Marriott said in court filings it expects to receive the hard drives with the video data that was pulled from the hotel's closed-circuit television by Tuesday and says it will continue to comply with the court's orders when asked for other discovery evidence.

"This is ridiculous," McCathern said Tuesday, referring to the case as "cancel culture." "There is no doubt, this woman was not offended. This is not a sexual assault, sexual misconduct, or sexual harassment. This tape is very, very clear."

Irvin, who has not worked at any network since the incident, says he talked to the woman about the sports shows that he was on and did not speak crudely. 

"I’m so thankful for this video because without it, I don’t know where this would have gone," Irvin said. "The eye in the sky don’t lie."

But the hotel chain, in a court filing last Friday, says that Irvin appeared to be visibly intoxicated" and began his aggressive behavior toward the employee, shaking her hand, stating she was attractive, and asking her if she watched football. 

Marriott says the NFL investigated the incident, but Irvin's lawyers say in court documents that all three of the accuser's co-workers and the hotel representative's statements made to the league were "defamatory, malicious and not privileged."