Matt Patricia, Lions issue statement on '96 assault allegation

Just three months after hiring Matt Patricia center left Lions general manager Bob Quinn, owner Martha Firestone Ford and president Rod Wood were forced to defend their new coach over sexual assault accusations from more

"The truth is on my side", Patricia said. "I feel very confident that Matt's the right head coach for the Detroit Lions".

The Lions organization said the incident did not show up in their standard background check, when Patricia was hired to replace Jim Caldwell earlier this year, but they're standing behind their hiring decision just the same. "It never came up as anything because it was dismissed and I was innocent". His remarks were in response to a story run by multiple news organisations saying that Patricia and a teammate faced a sexual assault charge in 1996 when both were players at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in upstate NY. "We will continue to work with our players and the National Football League to further awareness of and protections for those individuals who are the victims of sexual assault or violence".

"I think what's important here [about] what happened 22 years ago is what didn't happen", Patricia said.

"I'm innocent then, and I'm innocent now", said Patricia.

Patricia came to Detroit following 14 seasons in New England, where he most recently served as defensive coordinator from 2012 to 2017.

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The News also reported APG Security, a private investigation firm with a corporate headquarters in South Amboy, New Jersey, and offices in 21 states including Texas, had requested the court files for Patricia's case in January.

Patricia declined to get into the details of the evening.

On Thursday, after Patricia defended himself at a press conference, Belichick released his own statement to support his former assistant coach and announce that the Patriots did not know about the indictment until Wednesday night. I am so thankful to my wife and family for being supportive of me.

Patricia is a Vernon-Verona-Sherrill High School graduate who studied aeronautical engineering at RPI in Troy. You'd think they would question the histories of coaches the way they seem to be with NFL Draft prospects, perhaps even more doggedly. I try to share those same values with them. I am a husband and a father to a wonderful and incredible family.

- Steve O'Rourke (@steveohrourke) May 10, 2018The sexual assault allegations that surfaced against Matt Patricia are murky, but did the Lions really mention that he was "21 at the time and on spring break" in their statement?

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