Joe Namath, a former New York Jets player is accused of covering up sexual abuse at his football camp, where a coach who is suspected of being a serial paedophile worked.
Philip Lyle Smith, the plaintiff, filed a lawsuit in Brooklyn Supreme Court claiming that he was abused on the campsites by football coach Philip Foglietta as early as age 12.
Smith, who went to the same Brooklyn school that Foglietta taught, Poly Prep Country Day School, disclosed to the New York Post that he was a guest of Foglietta’s at the Joe Namath Football Camp in Wilmington, Vermont, in July 1972.
Given that most of the campers were senior high school kids, he acknowledged that his attendance was odd.
However, Smith said that it was a dream come true for a 12-year-old lad.
“It was a dream come true for a 12-year-old,” Smith told the Post.
“[Foglietta] always made sure Joe Namath threw me at least one pass almost every single day and said hello to me almost every single day.
“I was feeling very special.”
According to the complaint, some campers even believed that Smith, who was identified as John Doe, was Joe Namath’s nephew.
“This was because Foglietta made sure that Joe Namath always recognised Doe’s presence and that Doe received special attention whenever Joe Namath made an appearance,” the suit claims.
Smith claimed that following his father’s passing, Foglietta appeared to take care of him.
But according to the lawsuit, Foglietta was mistreated more severely and this abuse persisted from 1973 to 1975 when Smith was a camper at the Joe Namath Football Camp in Wilmington, Vermont.
Smith added that since he was an “invited guest” and not a paid camp member, Foglietta would reportedly make arrangements for him to remain in the same room as him and even sleep in his bed.
“Oh, you’re not paying, so you can’t sleep in the room with all the Poly guys. You’re going to stay with me in my room,” Foglietta told Smith, according to the suit.
“He had the entire evening with me alone,” Smith told the Post.
“The sexual abuse physically started there with his actions, started with massages, then it became naked massages where I was naked. He became naked, and it escalated from there, and it lasted the entire week.”
Smith said to the New York Post that over the first two to three years at the football programme, Foglietta mistreated him.
Smith said that he was given special treatment in the camp, which included Namath, as the torture continued.
According to him, the benefits included sharing meals in the camp canteen with coaches, instructors, former NFL player John Dockery, and other visiting NFL players in addition to Namath.
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