The day after Brett Favre announced his retirement from professional football (again), a sexual harassment lawsuit was filed against him in New York by two masseuses who worked for the New York Jets for a few days in 2008 when Favre was a quarterback for the team. Now everyone on the Internet wants to see pictures of Christina Scavo and Shannon O’Toole, the women who filed the lawsuit. It is the top trending topic on Google. Why? Because most people like to put a face with a name (hence: a picture search), especially when that name is connected to a salacious story involving a famous celebrity.
According to “The Ministry of Gossip” at the Los Angeles Times, Scavo and O’Toole, two masseuses employed by the New York Jets during their training camp period in 2008, allege in their lawsuit that Favre, then a quarterback for the Jets, sent text messages to a massage therapist colleague where he hinted he wanted a threesome with Scavo, saying he was “lonely” and had “bad intentions.” The lawsuit also alleges that a Jets coordinator later told them to not speak about the incident or they would never work for the Jets organization again.
The lawsuit was filed against Favre, the New York Jets and Lisa Ripi, the woman who coordinated massage therapists during training camp.
The legal action against the NFL veteran is just the latest in a series of incidents and scandals that also involved the New York Jets and involved pictures — cell phone sexting photos purported to be of Favre’s own genitals. The pictures were part of a series of text messages and voice mails allegedly sent to Jenn Sterger, a Jets sideline reporter and one-time Playboy model. Favre later admitted that he sent texts and left voicemails on Sterger’s phone, but he denied sending the penis pictures that were attributed to him in an expose on Deadspin. An NFL investigation into the matter later came up empty when Favre refused to cooperate. Last week, the league fined Favre $50,000 for his noncooperation.
There have been rumors of a lawsuit with regard to the Sterger scandal but nothing substantial has come of the rumblings and threats by Sterger’s lawyer. Some have indicated the two-year statute of limitations ended on a filing on Dec. 28. However, according to LALate, Sterger’s lawyer, Joseph Conway, allegedly has said the statute of limitations doesn’t expire until June 2011 because that was the last time she allegedly received a cell phone message from Favre.
Allegations of sexual harassment were first put forth by Scavo and O’Toole in the midst of the penis pictures scandal in October. Their names were first presented to the NFL in a complaint but their names were not released.
An attorney for the two women told the New York Daily News that they waited to see what the NFL would do with the Favre investigation in the Sterger case. Since they did what amounted to a slap on the wrist, Scavo and O’Toole filed their lawsuit.
“They had a smoking gun, those pictures, and just to do nothing?” David Jaroslawicz, Scavo’s and O’Toole’s lawyer, said. “The NFL apparently thought it better to let him retire.”
Although Favre’s last season as a professional quarterback in the NFL wasn’t as exciting as he may have liked, he provided more than his fair share of off-the-field headlines. And it looks as if the scandals are going to follow him into retirement.
Christie D’Zurilla, “Brett Favre sued by Christina Scavo, Shannon O’Toole for sexual harassment,” LATimes.com