NOW: Cable deserves to be suspended

Updated: November 6, 2009, 8:18 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

The National Organization for Women believes Tom Cable should not be coaching the Oakland Raiders while the team investigates allegations that Cable has a history of violent behavior toward women.

Cable
Cable

Cable said Wednesday he has spoken with Raiders owner Al Davis within the past two days and that his job status was not discussed. Cable said he plans to coach the team for the remainder of the season.

In an e-mailed statement to USA Today on Wednesday, NOW president Terry O'Neill said, "Tom Cable's history of violence against women raises a question: Why is he still the head coach of an NFL team?

"Mr. Cable admits having battered his first wife, and he stands accused of battering two other intimate partners as well. As a survivor of domestic violence, I know that women do not make such accusations lightly. Indeed, women have much more to lose than to gain by coming forward to tell their stories."

"The Oakland Raiders, properly, say they are undergoing a 'serious evaluation' of these recent allegations," O'Neill wrote in the e-mail. "At the very least he should be suspended during this process. ... A man who has admitted battering his wife has no business being a role model for all of us who would like to be able to look up to the head coach of an NFL football team."

In allegations made to ESPN's "Outside The Lines" that were reported Sunday, Cable's first wife, Sandy Cable, and his former girlfriend, Marie Lutz, said the coach physically abused them at various times during their respective relationships.

Cable released a statement Sunday acknowledging striking Sandy Cable with an open hand. Cable said the altercation happened more than 20 years ago and was the only time he's ever touched a woman inappropriately. He stood by that statement Wednesday, declining to answer any questions on the topic.

"We wish to be clear that we do not in any way condone or accept actions such as those alleged," the Raiders said in a statement Monday. "There have been occasions on which we have dismissed Raider employees for having engaged in inappropriate conduct."

O'Neill said she has not contacted the Raiders or the NFL directly. Cable said Thursday he did not believe pressure from outside groups would influence what the team decides to do with him.

"I think it will be handled properly," he said. "I'm going to leave it at that right now."

This is the second allegation against Cable accusing him of violence. Former defensive assistant Randy Hanson accused Cable of assaulting him and breaking his jaw during training camp. The Napa County (Calif.) district attorney declined to file charges in that matter in October.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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