Dwight Howard has denied the sexual assault accusations made by Stephen Harper, who is suing the eight-time NBA All-Star for assault and battery, false imprisonment and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Howard hopes that people who have commented on the situation publicly, like Ma$e, can see the good he’s done.
A statement issued by his publicist to HipHopDX, which was made on Sunday (October 29), made clear that Howard prefers the focus to be on his humanitarian efforts, not on his private life or the suit. It also called the credibility of his accuser into question.
“This is a civil case that was made public for profit. In this case, the accuser is solely suing Dwight Howard and has refrained from suing the other party in which he claims to be involved,” the statement began. “It is important to know that these matters were NEVER about sexual assault. This was merely about money and greed. Such individuals, have made continuous attempts to elicit payment from Dwight. This has resulted in intimidation of not only Dwight, his family and friends have also been targeted as well.”
It continued: “Dwight hopes that people spend as much time covering his innocence, his numerous ventures to improve the lives of people through his global initiatives, his efforts to improve the quality of life of all people, despite race, creed, culture, sex, sexual orientation, and others.
“Through efforts like his 750 acre farm, his community outreach, and his 18yr track record of global philanthropy, Dwight looks forward to fans, viewers and spectators alike to focus their time and energy on what matters, which are the positive endeavors that Dwight is actively working on for community, with negativity as the least important focus.
“Assault has never been an element in Dwight’s character and he has never sexually assaulted ANYONE. The insensitivity of the individuals making such claims to damage his reputation is unfortunate. However, Howard plans to continue to live his life with grace and not let such false claims ruin his joy + spirit,” he concluded.
Howard’s statement does not mention Ma$e by name. But the former Bad Boy star recently made headlines for, his very vocal reaction to Howard’s recent sexual assault allegations.
Addressing the claims on Wednesday’s (October 25) episode of It Is What It Is, Ma$e cast doubt on the belief that people don’t care about the private lives of public figures, citing the reports tied to Howard as a reason he isn’t on an NBA roster this season. But the rapper-turned-talk-show-host seemed less concerned about the alleged assault than about the fact that the accuser was a man.
“We gotta stop telling people, ‘I don’t care what you do on your own time.’ Because we do care… And women, you gotta stop. We gotta stop telling n-ggas, ‘What you do in your own personal time has nothing to do with me.’ It does matter. Those are the lies that are going on in society,” Ma$e began.
“We tell people it don’t matter but behind your back it matters. And that’s what we gotta first start off by saying. You hear [co-host] Stat saying what people do in their bedroom, that’s between them. Not necessarily true but I understand. You telling them it don’t matter but then it does matter. Anybody watching this knows it does matter.”
He continued: “People will say, ‘It don’t matter.’ But as soon as they find out, it matters. So they outing them. When it comes down to making money off the story, it matters. When it comes down to who dating you it’s gonna matter. When it comes down to if you’re gonna be in the locker room with them, it matters. Because there’s about 30 teams who didn’t sign Dwight Howard because it matters.”
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