New Chicago Bears wide receiver Josh Morgan faces assault charges after a valet at a popular Washington, D.C. nightclub says Morgan punched him in the face. Morgan denies the accusation.
Kenneth Johnson told NBC Washington he was working as a valet driver around 1 a.m. Sunday when a large SUV pulled up to Cities Restaurant and Lounge just off K Street in downtown Washington.
Josh Morgan, who signed with the Bears last week, got out with two women. Johnson said he looked at the women, which he says apparently upset Morgan.
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"I was just standing there and I looked up, and in the blink of an eye he just punched me right in the mouth," Johnson said. "Instantly my mouth is bleeding profusely, just blood coming out all over my jacket and stuff. I was scared. I didn't know what to do."
Police took Morgan into custody inside Cities and charged him with simple assault, NBC Washington reported. Morgan was released on a police citation promising to appear in court at a later date.
Johnson told NBC Washington he didn't do anything to provoke Morgan.
"It's not fair for anybody to go around punching people just doing their job," Johnson said. "I didn't say anything disrespectful to the lady. I didn't look at her or sexualize her in any way. I just looked in the direction, and I got hit."
Morgan denied the accusation. “I know I didn’t do anything wrong," he told NBC Washington in a phone interview.
"We are aware of Josh Morgan’s presence at a weekend incident in Washington, D.C.," read a statement from the Chicago Bears. "We are currently gathering information to learn more about the circumstances surrounding the event."
Johnson said he didn’t know who Morgan was and had to Google his name afterward to find out.
"When I Googled his name, it hurt me even more, because I'm a Redskins fan," he said. "Not only that, but I found out we went to the same high school, we graduated from the same high school, and you are a football player. Somebody like that coming from my community do something like that, I would normally look up to a person like that."
Morgan, 28, graduated from Washington's H.D. Woodson High School and played college football at Virginia Tech. He played for the San Francisco 49ers for four years before spending the past two seasons with the Redskins. He caught 68 passes for 724 yards and two touchdowns over two years for the Skins, starting 22 of the 30 regular season games in which he played.
He said he is not worried about his reputation.
“I’ve always been a stand-up guy in the community. I’ve always been a stand-up guy, period,” Morgan said. “Everybody knows me. Everybody knows how I am. Nothing like this has ever happened to me before. What a coincidence that now I signed with the Chicago Bears, now all of a sudden it happened.”