Nathan Broad: Three weeks punishment for a lifetime of suffering

Eliza Reilly Roar Rookie

By Eliza Reilly, Eliza Reilly is a Roar Rookie New author!

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103 Have your say

    Here’s a list of the things you can do in the AFL to get yourself suspended for three weeks.

    You can wrestle your opponent and accidentally make contact with his neck region as the Bulldogs’ Jack Redpath discovered earlier this year.

    You can unintentionally knock a player out while performing the perfect tackle like Collingwood’s Brodie Grundy.

    Or, you can circulate a photo of a woman’s breasts without her consent, break the law and violate her rights in the process.

    Richmond premiership player Nathan Broad will spend the first three games of the 2018 season sitting on the bench after doing just that.

    When the siren sounded on September 30 it signalled the end of a record-breaking, 37-year premiership drought for the Tigers.

    Players, staff and fans alike knew the coming night of celebrations would be one to remember. But for one woman, that was for all the wrong reasons.

    Within a day, photos began to circulate on social media of a naked woman wearing a Premiership medallion. A brief police investigation placed Broad at the centre of the allegations.

    It was revealed he took the photos and promised to delete them before instead forwarding them to his teammates without her content.

    From there the distribution rapidly increased and soon anyone with a finger on the social pulse had laid eyes upon the provocative images.

    The Richmond Football Club had the chance to send a message. They were the first club to appoint a female President who, coincidentally enough, sat alongside Broad as he apologised for his actions.

    Earlier this year, AFL house acted on their respect for women by firing two high-ranking executives after inter-office affairs – but the Tigers showed about as much fight as their grand final opponents.

    Three weeks was deemed adequate punishment for the years that young woman will suffer. She decided not to press criminal charges out of the fear and distress of exposing her identity.

    Had the case gone to court, Nathan Broad could have faced up to two years’ imprisonment under Victorian law.

    Instead, the club played the role of the judiciary. No financial sanctions were inflicted which meant the club-imposed suspension was the only punishment Broad received.

    Richmond had the chance to make him regret his actions and signal to the AFL community that enough was enough. When it came down to it, the price put on a lifetime of humiliation was three pathetic weeks.

    At the start of this year, the defender was a fringe player who had to fight to cement his spot in the team.

    Though he eventually succeeded and was an integral member of the Tigers’ defence on grand final day, a longer suspension could have derailed his 2018 season and forced him to re-contest his spot.

    Three games is not nearly enough time for another player to prove himself. Presumably, Broad will be slotted straight back into a settled line up once he has served his suspension.

    Richmond elected to rate his spot in the team more than his personal character and the club’s reputation.

    Nathan Broad and the Richmond Football Club hid behind a drunken shield fuelled by their Premiership breakthrough while disregarding a women’s dignity in the process.

    More can be said of the decision not to penalise Broad’s accomplices, who shared the photos beyond the club’s walls.

    The AFL has taken positive steps recently with the arrival of the Women’s competition and previously discussed decision to sack key executives, but if the AFL is to shake the boys club label, then they need to make an example of incidents like this.

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    The Crowd Says (103)

    • November 7th 2017 @ 7:19am
      Kane said | November 7th 2017 @ 7:19am | ! Report

      A 20 grand fine (that wasn’t suspended) and 100 hours community service on top of 3 weeks i believe would have been sufficient.

      • November 7th 2017 @ 7:39pm
        PeteB said | November 7th 2017 @ 7:39pm | ! Report

        Needed to be a minimum of half a season – 11 weeks. Three weeks just trivialises what happened. I like the extra $20k and whatever community services the AFL could add to that.

        • November 7th 2017 @ 8:46pm
          Neil from Warrandyte said | November 7th 2017 @ 8:46pm | ! Report

          Should get a public stoning too followed by a good old fashioned tar and feathering. AFL could raise some extra funds for a campaign against violence.

          • Roar Rookie

            November 8th 2017 @ 9:31am
            Pedro The Fisherman said | November 8th 2017 @ 9:31am | ! Report

            Perhaps some criminal charges as well!

            • November 8th 2017 @ 12:10pm
              Neil from Warrandyte said | November 8th 2017 @ 12:10pm | ! Report

              Based on past prosecutions for much more extreme and explicit examples of this crime, Broad would probably only be given a caution. I think the public stoning and tar and feathering in Federation Square would be more appropriate given the level of anger in the community

    • November 7th 2017 @ 7:28am
      Slane said | November 7th 2017 @ 7:28am | ! Report

      I’m not sure what the appropriate punishment is for somebody being an absolute grub and betraying a ‘partners’ trust. 3 weeks for Brodie Grundy was enough to make the whole competition reevaluate the way they were tackling. I can only hope 3 weeks for Broad is enough to make the whole competition reevaluate their attitude towards women. Though I am sure not all AFL players think it’s ok to distribute non-consensual nudes, there were an awful lot of people taking to social media to defend Broad’s very ordinary behaviour.

    • November 7th 2017 @ 7:36am
      R2k said | November 7th 2017 @ 7:36am | ! Report

      It’s a tough one but realistically what do you want them to do? Destroy someone else’s life in retribution?

      You’re also acting as if Broad isn’t going to face social repercussions for the rest of his career and have it following over his head once he retires.

      Did you want him suspended for a year? Two years?

      For the players who spread the photo around – what is your suggestion of punishment? And how do you determine the severity of each players respective guilt?

      • Roar Guru

        November 7th 2017 @ 2:53pm
        JamesH said | November 7th 2017 @ 2:53pm | ! Report

        Good point, R2k. The Broad headhunt stems from very understandable outrage, as what Broad did was reprehensible. However, destroying his career over a stupid mistake, even acknowledging the emotional trauma it caused the victim, achieves very little. People seem to forget that retribution is not justice.

        I just think that the club should have been far more creative with the penalty, given that this is a non-footballing incident. What Broad did has significant social ramifications so give him a punishment where he is giving something back to society – community service, ‘donation’ to charity, that sort of thing. Top it off with a requirement to undertake a course about respect for women.

        These sorts of punishments could easily include the others who shared the pic. How great would it have been to see Broad and his culpable mates standing outside the G for the Hawks vs Pies match in round 1, rattling a tin for breast cancer research?

        • November 7th 2017 @ 3:10pm
          R2k said | November 7th 2017 @ 3:10pm | ! Report

          Excellence! Completely agree – especially on the tin rattling.

          Realistically if Broad ever wants a life outside of football he’s going to have to show it now by giving back to the community. Otherwise it’s much like others have said – his main claim to fame while searching Google and Wikipedia will be this scandal.

          • November 8th 2017 @ 12:00am
            aw said | November 8th 2017 @ 12:00am | ! Report

            She wanted to report it to the police and went so far as doing so. Apart from not wanting her identity revealed, you can bet part of what made her withdraw her complaint was the realisation that her report could lead to him being given up to two years jail if it went to trial.

            I bet she was leant on, meaning she was not only the victim, but asked to be the judge or take a role in deciding whether her own actions of reporting the crime would contribute to his punishment. It shouldn’t be up to the victim to push charges, it should be the police who push charges if there is evidence and she should be able to remain anonymous as a victim. It should be illegal to publish her name I. The media or on social media.

            • November 8th 2017 @ 8:36am
              Neil from Warrandyte said | November 8th 2017 @ 8:36am | ! Report

              You haven’t read her statement have you? She went to police to get help to have the image removed from social media, not to have Broad charged.
              Not a snowflakes chance in hell of Broad copping any jail time, at most a community order, going by others charged with such an offence for much more explicit material.

            • November 8th 2017 @ 8:37am
              R2k said | November 8th 2017 @ 8:37am | ! Report

              You can potentially say anyone was leant on for doing anything in their life. She also could have dropped the charges because she was a fan of the club or legal advice.

              As it was I doubt that Broad would have gotten a maximum penalty anyway and I’d prefer the police taking the people who do this maliciously and regularly to jail.

              Edit: thanks Neil above for clearing it up. I hadn’t read the police report.

    • November 7th 2017 @ 7:39am
      GJ said | November 7th 2017 @ 7:39am | ! Report

      Firstly, I’d like to make it clear that I don’t condone what Nathan Broad did.

      However, this is BS. The lady in question chose, for whatever reason, to drop the charges. Since when has it been the AFL or 1 of their clubs responsibility to uphold the law?

      • November 7th 2017 @ 8:56am
        Birdman said | November 7th 2017 @ 8:56am | ! Report

        True – criminal changes were dropped by this young woman which shows she’s not vengeful, However the club with the AFL’s tacit approval chose to slap Broad with a lettuce leaf rather than make him truly accountable for his disresoectful behaviour towards this women.

        I get Broad appeared genuinely contrite but I noted his statement quietly apportioned his poor decision making on the drink which is a cop out IMHO.

        • November 7th 2017 @ 9:06am
          GJ said | November 7th 2017 @ 9:06am | ! Report

          Why were the AFL and the club involved at all? Because she happened to wearing a premiership medallion?

          I’d be interested to know what you consider would be the appropriate penalty that would make him accountable for his behaviour? And why?

          • November 7th 2017 @ 9:13am
            Birdman said | November 7th 2017 @ 9:13am | ! Report

            The AFL and the club are publically committed to inclusion which includes demonstrating respectful attitudes to women so they were bound to act particularly once the criminal investigation ceased.

            And yes the medallion made this a football issue like it or not.

            IMO he deserved double what he got and a significant fine since Broad’s actions are significantly more serious than a jumper punch or striking which will get you around 3 weeks at the high end.

            • November 7th 2017 @ 9:26am
              GJ said | November 7th 2017 @ 9:26am | ! Report

              I think that the match payments are $4300 next year. That may depend on his the structure of his contract though.

              Do the AFL now need to set up guidelines of punishments ranges for off field misdemeanours? I tend to agree with others in regard to him already facing a number of intangable penalties. It was a first offence. If there was a pattern of behaviours that continued, then sure, look at much harsher penalties.

              • Roar Guru

                November 7th 2017 @ 2:31pm
                Dalgety Carrington said | November 7th 2017 @ 2:31pm | ! Report

                The AFL will act if they think a club-imposed sanction is not enough.

              • November 7th 2017 @ 8:47pm
                Birdman said | November 7th 2017 @ 8:47pm | ! Report

                they should have IMO

        • November 7th 2017 @ 9:22am
          Hungry Jack said | November 7th 2017 @ 9:22am | ! Report

          My understanding is she dropped the charges because she did not want to be identified! Period. Perhaps her behaviour, too, was a poor decision influenced by drink. The fact that all details and circumstances are not publicly ‘out’ there and probably never will be should be a cautionary warning for those of us who choose to see this incident in black and white. After all, you could have 50 ‘similar’ cases appear in court and get 50 different outcomes across the board!

          • November 7th 2017 @ 9:33am
            GJ said | November 7th 2017 @ 9:33am | ! Report

            There would be thousands of people across Australia who wake up on any given day after a night out that included indulging in too much alcohol and/or recreation drugs with feelings of guilt, regret and remorse. And I am sure that in some cases their escapades finish up on social media somewhere.

            Unfortunately for the girl in this case, it has become far more public.

            People in general need to treat other better, and with a great deal more dignity and respect.

            • Roar Guru

              November 7th 2017 @ 11:01am
              Cat said | November 7th 2017 @ 11:01am | ! Report

              The part people are forgetting, or choosing to leave out, is she asked Broad to delete the picture. He lied to her and said okay it’s been deleted, then chose to send it to his mates.

              This isn’t one of those wake up hung over and find your bits on social media at all. She made it clear she wanted it deleted before it ever got shared around.

              • November 7th 2017 @ 11:10am
                GJ said | November 7th 2017 @ 11:10am | ! Report

                Yes. Massive breach of trust. It isn’t any wonder she doesn’t anything to do with him.

                Its like he forgot she was a human and that his need to share superceded everything else. Her wants, needs and feelings were thrown out the window. She became an object to him.

          • November 7th 2017 @ 7:51pm
            PeteB said | November 7th 2017 @ 7:51pm | ! Report

            Two young people having a bit of fun. Nothing wrong with that. The sharing of photos and the breach of trust however is very wrong. And illegal if permission is not given !

            • Roar Guru

              November 7th 2017 @ 9:03pm
              Penster said | November 7th 2017 @ 9:03pm | ! Report

              100% on the money PeterB. 2 kids having fun in the bedroom, nothing wrong with that. She’s been shamed/blamed as making a poor decision, but actually, it was him. The people judging her have obviously forgotten how much fun you can have when you’re young, or weren’t getting any action when they were!

          • Roar Rookie

            November 8th 2017 @ 9:35am
            Pedro The Fisherman said | November 8th 2017 @ 9:35am | ! Report

            The issue here HJ is that we won’t be seeing this incident reach the courts BUT we should have!

    • November 7th 2017 @ 7:44am
      Neil from Warrandyte said | November 7th 2017 @ 7:44am | ! Report

      What Broad did was very dumb and as a Tiger supporter, I was upset with his actions and wanted the club to throw the book at him.
      I think what is missed though with his punishment is that everyone just looks at his 3 game suspension. His punishment has many more layers to that. Since the event I haven’t seen him included in any of the Tigers grand final recollections as if he didn’t play in the game. His reputation and marketability is now zero, and as a fringe player, may now struggle to retain his spot in the 22. He would have also lost the respect of the playing group, all things unquantifiable as far as punishment goes.
      As for the ‘he could have gotten 2 years if it had gone to court’, well that was never going to happen. No one has even received a day yet, for even the most explicit of videos that actually identify the victim.
      I believe Broad’s punishment in its entirety does send a much stronger message then anything he would have received from the court system.

    • November 7th 2017 @ 8:17am
      I ate pies said | November 7th 2017 @ 8:17am | ! Report

      Talk about hyperbole. No-one knows who the girl is, and this will be forgotten about as soon as the media stop using it to push their own barrows.

      • Roar Guru

        November 7th 2017 @ 2:46pm
        Dalgety Carrington said | November 7th 2017 @ 2:46pm | ! Report

        The internet never forgets.

        • November 7th 2017 @ 3:37pm
          I ate pies said | November 7th 2017 @ 3:37pm | ! Report

          No-one knows who is is though, so that’s irrelevant.

          • Roar Guru

            November 7th 2017 @ 4:44pm
            Dalgety Carrington said | November 7th 2017 @ 4:44pm | ! Report

            Not “no-one”. There’d be a sizeable portion of people who do know specifically who she is, in particular people who are in a quite wide social circle around her.

            • Roar Rookie

              November 8th 2017 @ 9:36am
              Pedro The Fisherman said | November 8th 2017 @ 9:36am | ! Report

              And all of those boys at the Footy Club – they know who it is as well!

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