Former NFL cornerback files $50 million defamation lawsuit against ESPN

Miami Dolphins cornerback Dimitri Patterson is shown during an NFL football practice, Wednesday, May 29, 2013 at the Dolphins Training Facility in Davie, Fla. (AP)

Former NFL cornerback Dimitri Patterson has filed a $50 million defamation lawsuit against ESPN. Patterson calls the information in the article that described a courthouse scuffle between himself and law enforcement, “false and defamatory in its overall portrayal of DP as a violent, impulsive, unstable person.”

The ESPN story, filed in August by James Walker, occurred while Patterson was in family court due to a potential contempt of court charge stemming from a prior hearing. According to Walker’s reporting, Patterson attempted to escape the courtroom after the judge ordered officers to take him into custody. Two officers were injured during the apprehension including a female officer who “suffered neck and back injuries,” and “a male officer injured his wrist.”

Acting as his own lawyer, Patterson claims that court footage will corroborate his account.

The Miami Herald’s Charles Rabin also reported a story containing similar details. Rabin wrote that Patterson tackled one cop and knocked another to the ground before three other officers joined in and took control of the situation. One cop suffered a head injury, another hurt a wrist.”

Patterson was subsequently charged with battery on a law enforcement officer and resisting arrest with violence. Patterson, who played with five teams in eight NFL seasons has not appeared on a regular-season roster since 2014.

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DJ Dunson is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or find him on Twitter or Facebook.