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Melanie Coburn crashes NFL owners meeting over WFT investigation

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Former Washington Football Team employee Melanie Coburn arrived at the NFL owners meeting in Manhattan on Tuesday to demand the league release the full report of the investigation into the WFT’s workplace culture.

To further support her ongoing argument that the WFT has a history of “serial sexual harassment and assault” under owner Dan Snyder, Coburn said she hand-delivered urgent letters to hotel staff to forward to owners, urging them to release the review findings.

“We’ve had no comments since the investigation was wrapped up in July,” Coburn said, noting the $10 million fine handed down to the WFT at the time.

“There has been no outreach from the NFL to our attorneys,” she added about previous attempts to meet with the league.

But NFL commissioner Roger Goodell defended the league’s decision to keep findings private by saying a promise of “security, privacy and anonymity” was made to those who came forward.

“We need to stand by that,” he said, though it remains unclear why the NFL cannot simply redact the names within the report.

Melanie Coburn at the NFL owners meeting
Melanie Coburn at the NFL owners meeting
Ryan Dunleavy

Coburn and fellow former team employee Ana Nunez showed their faces in the lobby of the InterContinental to speak for a larger group because they did not sign non-disclosure agreements with Washington.

“I do think [Snyder] has been held accountable for it,” Goodell said, “and the organization has been held accountable.”

Dan Snyder
Dan Snyder
Getty Images

Earlier this month, leaked emails — as part of an NFL probe that collected 650,000 pieces of correspondence — revealed alleged inappropriate photos of WFT cheerleaders that were shared between former Washington GM Bruce Allen and former Raiders coach Jon Gruden.

Coburn said she believes Allen is “another fall guy” for Snyder in the email leak. Goodell denied the common accusation that a league employee leaked the emails.

“I want transparency and accountability,” Coburn said. “I want everyone to know the heinous things that happened in that organization.”

Goodell said the NFL will comply with Congress’ inquiry into the investigation.

Coburn was a WFT cheerleader for four years before she became the team’s marketing director for 10 years. Coburn left the team on her own accord. She alleged that men in the WFT organization were “trying to pimp out” cheerleaders, and that “objectifying, demeaning behavior from management,” [and] not organized prostitution took place.

— Ryan Dunleavy contributed to this report


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