If there is any doubt that the Miami Dolphins' locker room culture is completely unacceptable, it got erased yesterday. WPLG in Miami reports that last year, Richie Incognito was investigated by police in Aventura, Florida for harassing a female volunteer at the Dolphins' annual golf tournament.
The alleged incident happened May 18, 2012, at the Turnberry Resort & Club.Read the police report here.
The then 34-year-old volunteer told police that Incognito had been drinking, and when he was at the hole where she was working, he rubbed her privates with a golf club and knocked a pair of sunglasses off her head with it, according to the report.
"After that, he proceeded to lean up against her buttocks with his private parts as if dancing, saying 'Let it rain! Let it rain!'" the report states. "He finally finished his inappropriate behavior by emptying bottled water in her face."
The volunteer informed her supervisor, who contacted Miami Dolphins security, police say. The team's security said they would handle the incident.
The volunteer told police several people, including a sponsor of the event, saw Incognito's actions but didn't stop him.
There's no further word on how far this went, since the woman signed a confidentiality agreement. But all you need to know about how the Dolphins "handled" this is to look at Incognito's stats. He not only played every game in 2012, but started every single one. In what world is this not grounds for a suspension and a fine for conduct detrimental to the team? And no, "he wasn't actually arrested" is NOT an acceptable explanation. The bar for acceptable behavior is much higher than the bar below which you get arrested.
This is even more outrageous when you consider Incognito's history. He jumped before getting pushed out of Nebraska for bad behavior, then was dismissed before even playing a down at Oregon for the same reason. His entire NFL career has been plagued by unacceptable behavior. On an organization that didn't have its collective head up its ass, he'd be down to his last strike--and this incident would have been it. But no--he was actually put on the leadership council. Politicians have been forced out of office for way less than this. And no employer that I know of would condone this behavior. No way in the world an NFL team should be any different.
People are wondering why Jonathan Martin didn't "man up" and say something about the bullying he endured. Did they seriously expect Martin to speak up on a team whose idea of leadership is a guy with a history of discipline problems and who thinks it's remotely OK to treat women this way? If you do, there's a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to sell you. And what makes it even more galling is that the black players considered Incognito a role model--an "honorary" black man, as one of them put it. Well, I'm black, and if I knew about this, I'd probably cuss Incognito out. And I wouldn't be the least bit afraid to do it--I'm built similarly to him (though I'm about 80 pounds lighter than him).
After reading this, I'm more convinced than ever that there needs to be a complete housecleaning in Miami. In what world is behavior this outrageous rewarded with being made a role model for your teammates? If Steven Ross isn't willing to do it, Roger Goodell should do it for him.