Ole Miss' Nkemdiche brothers file counter-suit in assault lawsuit

Sam Cooper
March 11, 2014
Mississippi v Alabama
TUSCALOOSA, AL - SEPTEMBER 28: Brian Vogler #84 of the Alabama Crimson Tide fumbles the ball against Denzel Nkemdiche #4, Cameron Whigham #55 and D.T. Shackelford #9 of the Mississippi Rebels at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 28, 2013 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Almost a month after being sued for $2 million in a civil suit, Ole Miss football players Denzel and Robert Nkemdiche have formally denied all allegations against them and have filed a counter-suit against their accuser.

According to the Clarion Ledger, the brothers are seeking an unspecified amount in damages for “untrue and false statements” in plaintiff Matthew Baird’s original suit against the two.

Baird filed his initial suit on February 14 seeking $2 million in damages for “battery, negligence, and intentional infliction of emotional distress” for an incident that occurred on February 17, 2013.

Baird alleges that Robert – who was a senior in high school at the time and was committed to Ole Miss – and Denzel, along with five other Ole Miss football players, were involved in a fight at a fraternity on Ole Miss’ campus. Denzel is accused of, “without any provocation,” punching Baird in the back of the head and knocking him out.

After Baird was knocked out and was unconscious, Robert Nkemdiche and the other unidentified football players are accused of “kicking and stomping” the plaintiff and his friend -- seriously injuring them both.

Ole Miss has publicly defended the Nkemdiches and the Ledger reports that the Ole Miss Police Department never sought out charges in the case.

“A person was hit but he didn’t know who hit him,” Captain Michael Harmon said.

Per the Ledger:

The Nkemdiches, in a paragraph-by-paragraph answer to Baird’s suit, admitted only to being students at Ole Miss and from Loganville, Ga. Every other claim was met with a denial and demand for “strict proof.”

Their response reads:

“Nkemdiche would state and show that he suffered and sustained harm, injuries, damages, and/or losses as a result of the false and defamatory statements made by plaintiff/counter-defendant Matthew Baird and that, therefore, Nkemdiche is entitled to a judgement against (Baird) for compensatory damages in an amount to be determined by the jury.”

The brothers are also reportedly “seeking court costs and attorney fees” from Baird.

Denzel, an All-SEC linebacker, is currently suspended from the team for an unrelated incident in February in which he was arrested for disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace. Robert, the No. 1 overall recruit in the Rivals Class of 2013, registered 34 total tackles, eight tackles for loss, and two sacks in his freshman season and is currently in good standing with the team.

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