Massage therapists sue Favre, Jets over texts

NEW YORK (AP) - Two massage therapists sued Brett Favre on Monday, saying theylost their part-time jobs with the New York Jets after complainingabout sexually suggestive text messages from the veteranquarterback.

Claiming they were subjected to sexual harassment and jobdiscrimination, Christina Scavo and Shannon O'Toole are seekingunspecified damages from Favre, the Jets and a Jets massagecoordinator.

The suit also includes a message Favre allegedly sent to athird, unidentified massage therapist. "Kinda lonely tonight," itsays. "I guess I have bad intentions."

The team declined to comment. Favre's agent didn't immediatelyreturn a telephone message.

The lawsuit comes five days after the NFL fined Favre $50,000for not being forthright in an investigation into allegations thathe sent lewd text messages and photos to former Jets game hostessJenn Sterger when they both worked for the team in 2008.

The league's investigation went on for months as the three-timeMVP staggered through his 20th NFL season, fighting injuries as heled Minnesota in a disappointing season. Favre's consecutive startsstreak was eventually snapped at 297 in December and he sat out theVikings' final game, a loss to Detroit on Sunday. Afterward he saidhe's retiring -- for good, this time.

The NFL also reviewed media reports that Favre pursued twomassage therapists who worked at the Jets' facility in 2008, butthe league said that claim could not be substantiated becausepeople with "potentially relevant information" wouldn't cooperatewith investigators. O'Toole's and Scavo's lawyer, DavidJaroslawicz, said he told investigators about the information hisclients had.

The two women worked for years at the Jets training camp and forvarious players individually, sometimes giving massages at players'homes, according to the lawsuit. O'Toole brought Scavo into theJets fold, Jaroslawicz said.

After Scavo and an unidentified colleague gave massages at thetraining camp in 2008, Favre sent the colleague a text messagesaying, "Brett here you and crissy want to get together I'm allalone," the lawsuit said.

Jaroslawicz declined to identify the massage therapist whoallegedly received the messages.

Scavo told her husband, Joseph, about the messages. He promptlytold Favre to back off and apologize, according to the lawsuit.

The husband got a brush-off from Favre, and his wife and O'Toolegot blackballed by the team, the lawsuit says.

The Jets stopped calling the women for work, initially offeringsuch excuses as having moved the training camp, Jaroslawiczsaid.

After the allegations about Favre chasing Jets masseusessurfaced in media reports, the team's massage coordinator, LisaRipi, sent Scavo a series of e-mails calling Favre "a pervert" butripping Scavo for not having keeping the matter quiet, the lawsuitsays.

"There are ways to handle things in a professional manner andways to be compensated not in public. ... All this nonsense isunnecessary," Ripi wrote, according to the lawsuit. "For sure feelhorrible that u had to go thru that w a pervert. ... He was wrongon all counts...and we cldve helped u a lot more at that time."

Meanwhile, Ripi told O'Toole to "keep your mouth shut" anddeclared that neither O'Toole nor Scavo would ever work for theteam again, the lawsuit says.

Jaroslawicz said his clients had held off on suing whileawaiting the results of the NFL investigation, but they decided togo ahead after the probe ended in what they saw as a tokenfine.

Allegations about Favre's below-the-belt behavior initiallysurfaced on the website Deadspin, which posted a video Oct. 7 thatincluded text messages and voicemails allegedly left by Favre forSterger, including one in which he allegedly invites her to hishotel.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell determined that Facre was "notcandid in several respects during the investigation" but "could notconclude" that Favre violated the league's personal conduct policybased on the evidence he had, the league said in a statementWednesday announcing the fine. Forensic analysis failed toestablish that Favre sent the objectionable photographs to Sterger,the league said.

"Clearly, (the massage therapists) were just as dissatisfiedwith the NFL's decision as we were. Or lack of a decision, for thatmatter," Sterger's lawyer, Joseph Conway, said Monday. He wouldn'tsay whether Sterger was also planning a lawsuit.

Favre has consistently refused to answer reporters' questionsabout the allegations.

While being buffeted by questions about his behavior, Favre alsohas been battered by injuries to his ankle, chin, ribs, back, headand throwing shoulder -- the one that forced the famously hardy41-year-old quarterback to miss a start, against the Giants on Dec.13.

He sat out Minnesota's loss to the Lions on Sunday because of aconcussion and said the game would be his last. Fans have heardthat before, however -- he also retired in 2008 with the Green BayPackers and 2009 with the Jets, only to return both times.


Associated Press sports writers Dennis Waszak Jr. in New Yorkand Jon Krawczynski in Minneapolis, and Associated Press researcherBarbara Sambriski, contributed to this report.