A woman who alleged Kristaps Porzingis raped her in his Manhattan apartment the night he suffered a serious knee injury tried to get the New York Knicks to mediate an agreement between the two about payments to not notify police about the incident.
According to ESPN, Porzingis’ accuser reached out to the Knicks and had worked with their legal team to coordinate plans for Porzingis to pay $68,000 for a college fund for the victim’s brother eight months after the alleged rape and once it became clear that Porzingis might not pay. The incident took place on Feb. 7, 2018, hours after Porzingis — then a member of the Knicks — tore his left ACL during a game against the Milwaukee Bucks.
Text messages and emails that ESPN obtained clarify some details from the alleged attack, including that Porzingis said he was “drunk” and invited a neighbor over to get an autograph. From there, the meeting escalated into a sexual encounter, apparently a very violent one. The details of the incident are disturbing, as the woman claims Porzingis called her a “slave” and hit her in the face multiple times.
On Monday, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski published a report that included the Knicks’ involvement in the negotiations, which ended when Porzingis obtained outside council to handle the matter. The story notes that the woman sent the Knicks text messages between herself and Porzingis during the process, which details how the two met up on the night in question.
After asking the Knicks in October to help her get the $68,000 from Porzingis, the woman emailed the Knicks a series of text messages that included Porzingis’ invitation to visit his apartment the night of the alleged assault. Porzingis told her that he was “drunk,” according to the texts. The woman agreed to come to his apartment, responding: “I’m not fancy at all. I’m in flip-flops and a night dress. I’m basic. …”
In the handwritten letter that she described as a contractual agreement with Porzingis for payment of $68,000 — a copy of which was obtained by ESPN — Porzingis’ name is misspelled and it is unclear whether the signature belongs to him.
Legal representation for Porzingis says that the contract is a “forgery” and noted that the accuser refused to show the original document to either his lawyers or the Knicks. Emails obtained by ESPN also apparently show the aftermath of the physical altercation on the accuser, as well as her interactions with Porzingis following the alleged rape.
In her correspondence with the Knicks, the woman included a photograph that she said showed hair loss and broken nose cartilage, “from when he repeatedly hit me.” Several days after the alleged encounter, the woman wrote that she had to pay “about $10,000” for corrective surgery.
In an Oct. 30, 2018, email to the Knicks, the woman wrote: “After the extremely aggressive encounter, he was very apologetic, loving and caring … hence, the offer he made to pay my (little) bro’s tuition + more. … Although how he treated me was horrendous, as a Knicks fan, I do not want him to get him in any trouble with the law. I stayed back and enjoyed the rest of the time I spent with him. It’s crucial to note the fun times I had with him doesn’t negate the fact that he offered to compensate me as a soothing gift even though I didn’t ask him to.” The woman said she stayed with Porzingis until 11 a.m. the day after the alleged assault.
Besides the $68,000 payment, the woman also wanted the Knicks to assist in the return of a pair of sandals she termed her “favorite Jordan gray and orange slides.” She also had texted Porzingis for the return of the shoes, and he acknowledged she left them in his apartment.
The New York Police would not comment to ESPN about whether there’s an active investigation into Porzingis’ actions that night. The Mavericks, who traded for Porzingis before the deadline in February, apparently were aware of the woman contacting the Knicks but claim they were not aware of rape allegation, despite reports indicating otherwise.
UPDATE: Wojnarowski later tweeted a report from Porzingis’ attorney, which said they were cooperating with an investigation.