Jerry Richardson's alleged actions led to Carolina Panthers settling with accusers

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The NFL is taking over the investigation into allegations of workplace misconduct by Carolina Panthers owner and founder Jerry Richardson.

Richardson said that he believes it is time to turn the franchise over to new ownership. The statement says Richardson will put the franchise up for sale at the end of the season.

As they work to solidify a playoff spot, the Panthers also have another storyline competing for attention: the investigation of team owner, Jerry Richardson.

That's when Sports Illustrated published a blockbuster report on Richardson's alleged workplace misconduct - including sexual harassment, a racial slur and the owner asking some of his female employees if he could "personally shave their legs".

Details are emerging of misconduct allegations against Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson.

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In a statement Friday, team spokesman Steven Drummond acknowledged accusations had been made against Richardson, 81.

The parties involved are forbidden to discuss the details as part of non-disclosure requirements that came with the settlements, according to the Sports Illustrated report.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said Sunday in an email to The Associated Press that the league will handle the investigation rather than the team, as originally planned.

In a statement Friday, the Panthers said the team and Richardson take the allegations very seriously and are committed to a full investigation, which they said would be headed by global law firm Quinn Emmanuel Urquhart and Sullivan LLP and overseen by minority leader and former White House Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles.

It was problematic too, because Carolina was having Erskine Bowles, the former White House chief of staff who is also a minority owner for the very franchise he was investigating, head up the process.

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"I have enormous respect for the man, but will wait for the results of the investigation before making any judgment", Rivera said.

"There has been no greater mission or objective in my life than to have brought an National Football League franchise to Charlotte", Richardson said.

The Panthers began play two years later in 1995.

The first game the team will play following the news comes next Sunday when they host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The scout left the team but employed a Charlotte attorney to negotiate a settlement.

Richardson fired general manager Dave Gettleman, who helped the Panthers reach Super Bowl 50, the day before training camp.

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