A woman accused Mark Cuban of sexually assaulting her while they posed together for a photo in 2011. The Dallas Mavericks owner denies the allegation, which was reported publicly for the first time Tuesday by the Portland, Ore., alternative newspaper the Willamette Week.
“It didn’t happen,” Cuban said Tuesday in an email to multiple media outlets.
In the same email, Cuban also forwarded a memo written by the prosecutors explaining that the case was “declined for prosecution because the complainant does not want to proceed and I have concluded no crime can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Portland police investigated the allegation at the time and determined there was insufficient evidence to press criminal charges, according to the Willamette Week, which obtained a copy of the police report.
The alleged incident took place on April 23, 2011, at the Barrel Room nightclub in Portland, where Cuban was visiting for a playoff series between the Mavericks and Trail Blazers. The accuser told police that she asked Cuban to pose for a photo with her around 2 a.m. Cuban was “very drunk” at the time, a friend who was with the accuser at the club that night told Portland Police Det. Brendan McGuire.
As the accuser and Cuban were posing for pictures, the police report states, "Cuban then pushed his hand down the back of her jeans and inside her underwear where he cupped his hand over her groin area and inserted the tip of his finger into her vagina."
The woman waited more than a week to contact the police because she didn’t want to be "labeled 'that girl' and involved in a sex scandal with Mark Cuban," she said during her interview with the police.
In addition to the accuser and her friend, McGuire also interviewed Cuban and several other people who were at the club that night, including NBA star Kevin Love.
"According to the detailed prosecution decline memo, investigators interviewed the complainant's boyfriend and female friend, as well as employees and patrons of the bar, and other persons with Mr. Cuban and no one observed any inappropriate behavior by Mr. Cuban,” Cuban's attorney, Stephen Houze, told the Willamette Weekly in a statement.
"This incident never happened and her accusations are false."
The prosecution memo states that Cuban passed a polygraph examination in which he was asked specific questions about the accusation and also submitted statements from two medical experts who stated that the act Cuban had been accused of was physically impossible.
"Because all leads have been exhausted and there remains a lack of physical or substantial circumstantial evidence," McGuire wrote on July 28, 2011, "I recommend the case be suspended."
According to the prosecutors’ memo, the accuser “consistently and repeatedly stated to police investigators she does not want to pursue this matter further. The complainant requested documentation and investigation of her complaint but has confirmed with me she will not participate in a criminal prosecution and agrees her claim cannot be proven.”
Still, she recently told the Willamette Week: "I filed the report because what he did was wrong. I stand behind that report 1,000%."
Last month, Sports Illustrated published a report that described a Mavericks front office that was "rife with misogyny and predatory sexual behavior: alleged public fondling by the team president; outright domestic assault by a high-profile member of the Mavs.com staff; unsupportive or even intimidating responses from superiors."
Cuban was not implicated in that report. "Obviously there's a problem in the Mavericks organization and we've got to fix it," Cuban told Sports Illustrated for its report. "I'm embarrassed, to be honest with you, that it happened under my ownership, and it needs to be fixed."