WASHINGTON (WJLA) -- Cincinnati Reds pitcher Alfredo Simon wants the name made public of a woman who is suing him for $15 million after she said he sexually assaulted her in a Washington hotel in 2013.
The suit says the woman met Simon at a nightclub, when his team was in town to play the Nationals, and she went with him by cab to the Mayflower Renaissance Hotel where, she claims, he forced sex upon her.Criminal charges were never filed against Simon, but the woman filed a civil case. And now Simon wants her name made public.
A federal judge is weighing the case and will decide whether the survivor, known as Jane Doe in court - can stay anonymous as she pursues a multi-million dollar lawsuit against Simon
Laura Dunn is board president of the D.C. nonprofit SurvJustice, which works on behalf of survivors of sexual assault. She says filing as a Jane Doe is a common practice in cases like this and forcing this woman into the light will only do her harm.
"We already know from high profile cases that the victim is almost always harassed. People don't know whether or not he committed this crime, but just by the fact he is an athlete and people support his team, they will heckle her into silence," Dunn says.
But Simon's attorneys say the accuser's legal team has been very vocal, essentially launching a media campaign that could impact potential jurors in the District. Their filings say the woman's team can't have it both ways, wanting privacy after publicizing the case.
But victims advocates like Dunn say a survivor's name shouldn't matter.
"That doesn't help move this case forward at all," Dunn says. "The perpetrator knows who this woman is. He doesn't need her name to be public. Unfortunately there is prevalent victim blaming in our culture and to have her name exposed would be very harmful to other survivors."
In earlier court filings, Alfredo Simon denies the allegations made by the woman. His attorneys and the attorney representing the survivor did not want to comment for this story.