Former Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer and the San Diego woman who first accused him of sexual assault, triggering the investigation that led to an unprecedented suspension from Major League Baseball, have settled their civil lawsuits outside of court, with no money exchanged between the two parties.
The woman accused Bauer of sexually assaulting her during two encounters in the spring of 2021, prompting the former Cy Young Award winner to be placed on administrative leave that July. The woman was later denied a permanent restraining order in Los Angeles Superior Court, and the district attorney's office declined to file criminal charges against Bauer. But MLB -- which has the authority to apply punishment outside the criminal justice system and spoke to other women who made similar accusations -- handed Bauer a 324-game suspension in April 2022, twice longer than the previous high under its domestic violence policy.
An independent arbitrator shortened the suspension to 194 games in December and ruled that Bauer be reinstated, prompting the Dodgers to release Bauer, who is currently pitching in Japan.
Bauer sued the woman for defamation in April 2022, and the woman countersued for sexual battery four months later. Court proceedings had been scheduled to begin in February, but both sides have agreed to drop their respective cases. The woman, Lindsey Hill, will receive $300,000 in insurance policy proceeds that will be sent in a trust account to her lawyers' offices, according to an email from Hill's lawyers that was provided by a representative with Bauer.
"Trevor Bauer and Lindsey Hill have settled all outstanding litigation," Bauer's attorneys, Jon Fetterolf and Shawn Holley, wrote in a statement on Monday. "Both of their respective claims have been withdrawn with prejudice, effective today. Mr. Bauer did not make -- and never has made -- any payments to Ms. Hill, including to resolve their litigation. With this matter now at rest, Mr. Bauer can focus completely on baseball."
ESPN did not name the woman in this case in previous reporting, and generally does not identify individuals who say they have been sexually assaulted, but her legal team identified her in comments on Monday.
One of Hill's attorneys, Bryan Freedman, wrote the following in a statement: "In April 2022, Trevor Bauer sued Lindsey Hill for defamation. In what turned out to be an outstanding resolution for Lindsey, neither Lindsey nor anyone on her behalf paid anything to Bauer. Not a single dollar. Even better, Lindsey received $300,000 from her insurance company. Based on that payment, Lindsey agreed to settle the lawsuit. Now that the lawsuit is over, Lindsey looks forward to helping others."
Bauer, 32, subsequently released a near-four-minute video on YouTube alleging that Hill's legal team approached him "multiple times" about a financial settlement that his side consistently declined. Bauer said in the video that the defamation lawsuit allowed his legal team to uncover additional cell phone material that was "deliberately and unlawfully concealed" from his lawyers, most notably a video of the woman "lying in bed next to me while I'm sleeping, smirking at the camera without a care in the world -- or any mark on her face" on the morning after the second alleged incident.
"I think it paints a pretty clear picture of what actually happened the evening of May 15th and why the video was originally concealed from us," Bauer added.
Hill's initial declaration for a temporary restraining order included documentation that she was diagnosed at a San Diego-area hospital with an acute head injury and assault by manual strangulation -- along with other injuries -- from being choked unconscious during what she described as consensual rough sex that went too far. Kelly Valencia, the forensic nurse examiner who performed the Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) exam on Hill later that night, testified during the initial hearing in August of 2021 and said the bruising she documented outside the woman's vagina was unlike any she had seen in her 40-plus years of experience.
"It was frankly alarming," she said.
Bauer referenced the cell phone video and previously deleted text messages from Hill as "critical information" that allows him to "clear my name."
"Over the last two years, I've been forced to defend my integrity and my reputation in a very public setting, but hopefully this is the last time I have to do so, as I'd prefer to just remain focused on doing my job, winning baseball games and entertaining fans around the world," Bauer said in his video. "So today, I'm happy to be moving on with my life."