Jana Weckerly, the 27-year-old former stripper who is suing Jerry Jones for sexual assault, claims the Dallas Cowboys owner paid her an undisclosed sum of money over a long period of time in exchange for her silence.
Weckerly filed the suit against Jones earlier this month, alleging that he “fondled her genitals” and “forced her to touch or rub his penis” at a five-star hotel roughly five years ago. As Scott Farwell of The Dallas Morning News noted, Jones’ attorneys have denied the claims and argued that the case falls outside the five-year statute of limitations for the state of Texas.
However, Dallas defense attorney Thomas Bowers is likely looking to prove that the alleged hush money that Jones gave Weckerly was paid out more recently and thus would allow for an exemption from the statue of limitations.
Weckerly says Jones and the Cowboys periodically sent money to her bank account from 2009 until at least July 2013. She is seeking more than $1 million in damages. Chad Ruback, a Dallas appellate lawyer, reviewed the complaints filed by Weckerly’s legal team and found some holes in the claim.
“She’s claiming she was coerced against her own free will through forced payments, but I’m not aware of any case law in Texas that would toll [suspend] that statute of limitations on those grounds,” Ruback said. “And if she’s choosing to accept those payments, that would suggest it wasn’t against her free will.”
Jones insists the sexual assault lawsuit is merely an extortion attempt and a way for Weckerly’s lawyer to make a name for himself. I tend to agree.