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Did Roger Goodell’s Bodyguard Assault Photographer?

A recent report from Gothamist.com suggests that Roger Goodell’s personal bodyguard and head of security Thomas Crowe assaulted a NY Daily News photojournalist earlier in September when the latter was camped out NFL’s office in New York City.

Photographer JB Nicholas indicates that the assault took place on September 17th outside NFL headquarters on Park Avenue and East 52nd Street.

According to the report, the situation in question is as follows (h/t SB Nation). 

Somewhere between 88th and 89th, the truck pulls up alongside me on the passenger side, turns on its windshield wipers and pins me against a double parked car,” Nicholas says. “I was knocked off and the truck ran over my foot.”
On Park and East 93rd, Nicholas claims the SUV’s driver “cut the wheels to the left and gunned it, and knocked me off the bike again.”

“[Crowe]’s telling everyone he’s a cop, I hold him off with a stiff arm in the intersection and then my phone fell, so I figure I’d just sit down at the end of the flower bed in the median and wait for the cops to come and arrest this guy. Then he tackles me backward and puts his forearm into my neck and starts choking me.”

“So I grab his tie and say, ‘Stop (explative) choking me!’ And he loosens up and puts his hand on my diaphragm. That’s when I hear sirens, and Crowe says, ‘The calvary’s coming.

Once the police arrived at the scene, Nicholas was the one charged and arrested.

The police arrived and charged Nicholas with second degree assault, a felony, and third degree assault and criminal mischief, both misdemeanors. According to the criminal complaint, Nicholas punched the SUV driver in the face enough to cause swelling and redness, threw his bike at the driver and hit his knee, requiring treatment at a hospital, and keyed the SUV, causing more than $250 in damages.

Interestingly enough, the arresting officer reportedly ignored two eyewitnesses that indicated Crowe was the aggressor in the situation. He also shook Crowe’s hand and patted him on the shoulder before Goodell’s head of security took off in a car.

This should be of some concern for a league that’s been dealing with a ton of off-field violence and a bad public perception over it. Did one of Goodell’s henchmen actually turn to this extreme level of violence in order to help avoid a photo of him outside the headquarters? Seems a bit extreme to me.

Photo: Gothamist.com