A man who first sued Joe Namath in 2019 under the name “John Doe” has settled with the New York Post Sunday night, told the outlet that he was regularly sexually abused at Namath’s youth football camp in 1972, when he was just 12.
Philip Lyle Smith, who attended Namath’s camp in the early 1970s, claims that former Brooklyn Poly Prep football coach John Foglietta repeatedly sexually assaulted him during his time at the camp. According to Smith’s lawsuit, which was provided to Deadspin by Smith’s attorney, Arthur Middlemiss, Foglietta was a serial pedophile who abused young boys while he was a football coach at the school between 1966 and 1991. In 2012, Brooklyn Poly Prep settled a lawsuit about allegations that Foglietta raped and molested several boys and issued an apology to his students. Foglietta died in 1998.
“My innocence was robbed from me at the age of 12 years old at the Joe Namath football camp in Wilmington, Vt., at the Sitzmark Lodge in July 1972,” Smith told The Post.
Smith’s lawsuit alleges that Foglietta abused him from the ages of 10-17, from 1970 to 1977. The lawsuit alleges that, “[a]after Smith’s father died unexpectedly in 1970, “One of the few bright moments that happened after his father’s death was that [Smith] was able to attend a summer camp run by Poly for free.”
Smith alleges that while attending the Joe Namath Instructional Football Camp, Namath and his partner, former Jets player John Dockery, tolerated and covered up “known sexual abuse at the camp” by Foglietta. Smith said he attended the camp as Foglietta’s invited guest, and that adults at the camp did not question why he slept in Foglietta’s room while other Poly Prep students slept with other campers.
Smith’s lawsuit claims Foglietta ordered a cot brought to his room for Smith to sleep in, but Foglietta never got the cot and Smith ended up sleeping in the coach’s bed, Foglietta threatened to send Smith home send if he does not oblige, since “Foglietta was surety [Smith’s] camp attendance.”
According to Smith:
“He had the whole evening alone with me. The sexual abuse started physically there with his actions, started with massages, then it became naked massages where I was naked. He went bald, and it escalated from there, and it went on all week,” Smith said.
Smith said Foglietta would masturbate in front of him and that the trainer “tried to masturbate me, but I was 12 years old — I couldn’t get an erection.”
Smith’s lawsuit also alleges that Namath and Dockery were very involved in the day-to-day lives of the campers, noting that Namath attended camp sessions almost every day and visited the living areas in the camp, including camp dormitories. Additionally, the complaint alleges that “counselors employed by Namath were present and assisted when the Poly group checked into the Sitzmark Lodge, the facility used by Namath to house Foglietta and the Poly campers. Counselors were well aware that Doe was not assigned a room or bunk like the other campers. While at the check-in date, a counselor overheard Foglietta telling Doe that he would not have a bunk bed and would be sleeping in Foglietta’s room.” When asked if he needed a cot for Smith to sleep in, Foglietta allegedly replied, “Okay. Why not?” Foglietta allegedly left the bed outside his room until it was removed the next day.
Furthermore, Smith recalls that counselors had to do bed checks every night and that other campers were disciplined when their beds were found empty.
Smith told the Post he broke his silence about his abuse for the first time in 45 years when his wife noticed how upset he became when he Penn State child abuse scandal. Smith compared Namath’s ignoring of Foglietta’s abuse to former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno’s alleged knowledge of coach Jerry Sandusky’s sexual abuse of children.
The lawsuit alleges that Foglietta’s behavior “was an unmistakable red flag to Namath, and Dockery that something was seriously wrong with Foglietta and that Doe was at serious risk of harm.”
Deadspin reached out to Namath’s attorneys for comment, but by the time of publication they had not returned our efforts to contact them.