Bills’ investigation of Matt Araiza didn’t include information from alleged victim’s perspective
As the Bills deal with the swift and sudden consequences of choosing to keep punter Matt Araiza over Matt Haack despite knowing that Araiza has been accused of rape, important questions are emerging regarding the quality and extent of the team’s investigation.
Via the Associated Press, the attorney representing the alleged victim said that the Bills have not contacted him for details.
Attorney Dan Gilleon said that he informed team counsel Kathryn D’Angelo regarding the situation in late July.
“She seemed like she was concerned,” Gilleon told the AP. “She says she’ll get back to me, and then she never did. I even followed up and said, ‘Hey, you guys haven’t talked to me and called me back like you said you would.’ And they just ignored that, too.”
Multiple reports have indicated that the Bills didn’t know about the allegations when drafting Araiza. The team, however, has not expressly said so. (A team spokesman did not respond to a Friday text message asking that question.) But it’s clear that the Bills knew before deciding to keep Araiza and cut Haack.
Bills coach Sean McDermott decided that Araiza would not punt in Friday’s preseason finale. After the game, McDermott made it clear that the process of gathering information will continue.
It remains to be seen whether that includes speaking to Gilleon. If it doesn’t, the team’s work can be called neither thorough nor complete.