The lawyer representing three victims that were allegedly assaulted at Cameo night club July 11 filed a lawsuit days later, claiming NFL players Mike and Maurkice Pouncey had beaten and bruised his clients. Little has happened in the case since -- police said they were waiting for the victims to talk and the night club hadn't released surveillance footage yet, while the Dolphins center and his brother were neither charged with nor cleared of crimes.
But today, Marwan Porter, the lawyer for victims Riquan James, Brentley Williams and Niya Pickett, offered New Times some updates and new information on the case. Porter says the night club will have to hand over video in the next 30-45 days, that two independent witnesses saw the incident and are able to identify which Pouncey brother did what to whom, and, perhaps most importantly, that his clients have in fact, talked to the police about the incident since it happened.
"Obviously, this is Miami Beach and these are celebrities-star athletes," Porter says about why Miami Beach PD said his clients hadn't spoken to detectives initially. "Is it outside the realm of possibilities that there was a hope and a prayer that maybe this would go away and it wouldn't become an issue and evolve into what it's now evolved into? I don't know, but I'm trustful in the Miami Beach Police that they're going to investigate this to their fullest extent and that they'll come to the right decision after they get through investigating what happened, talking with all of the different witnesses who actually saw this assault take place."
Miami Beach Police Sgt. Bobby Hernandez didn't immediately return a phone call for explanation. We'll update the post when he does so.
Porter said he has at least two folks who witnessed what happened and were able to not only identify the Pouncey brothers as the perpetrators, but were able to distinguish which one did what to whom. He also confirmed that the night club would have to release video footage of the incident soon, something that could sway the case.
"Now that we're in the actual litigation posture of it, the next step of the litigation process is something called discovery. In laymen's terms, it's information gathering, so we're able to make requests from the night club, for anything and everything that may even remotely relate to this particular incident. We'll have the ability to request that Cameo hand over any and all surveillance video they may have and, listen, I specialize in this, this is not my first case dealing with an assault or a shooting at a club -- one thing I'm sure the video will show is some type of pushing or shoving or conflict. The video may not show the actual faces of the individuals who did it, I'm not sure, but I think the most compelling evidence is individuals who said 'I was there, I saw what happened, this is what happened and that's just the way it is.' I think that's extremely compelling information, especially if they don't have a dog in the fight."
Despite sending letters to the night club insisting that they preserve the footage, there remains the possibility it could have been destroyed. "I know the police were involved so it's highly unlikely that they've done anything to alter the video," he said. "But if they have, then there's consequences for that conduct as well."
The lawyer representing the Pouncey's -- Jeff Ostrow -- has called Porter's suit a "sham" and promised to file a defamation suit against the victims.
Porter said his clients were pummeled by "300 pound giants" and that they still suffer headaches and dizziness. Two of the victims -- Pickett and Williams -- still have trouble seeing out of one of their eyes, he says. It's something that causes him to dismiss Ostrow's threat.
"He would be ill advised if he did," Porter says. "Again, I just think it shows a lack of professionalism for him as an officer of the court to cast aspersions and really to engage in some of the same bullying techniques as his clients. You know what the point is, it's an intimidation factor. I just think it's in very poor taste and it shows an utter lack of professionalism. These people were injured. They have visible injuries. If he knows it all, if he's so confident of what happened, I'd love to see his investigation report. Does he have something that we don't? Is he able to identify the individuals who injured Riquan and Niya and Brentley? If he doesn't have that information, you just gotta question some of the commentary. These people are not lawyers, they're people like you and any other person out there who was injured and assaulted by somebody. Imagine how they feel if this really happened -- which it did -- and you're going to sue them because you got injured and you're telling people who injured you? It's crazy."
Ostrow didn't return a request for comment. We'll update this post when he does so.
Porter also confirmed that the lawsuit filed on behalf of the victims asks for a minimum of $15,000, not merely $15,000. When asked how high the damages could reach, Porter didn't specify.
"You just never know," he said. "You never know. If after seeing the eye doctor and different specialists, the clients have permanent injuries -- you know, one of my clients is having a very, very difficult time seeing out of her eyes. If there's permanent damage, there could be a problem."
You can view the lawsuit filed by Porter here: