Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant is being sued by his former attorney and landlord, Royce West, for allegedly causing more than $60,000 worth of damage to a DeSoto rental mansion. The court action is the latest falling out between the two, who used to be close.
West, the property's owner, claims that Bryant violated his lease by leaving the 6,400-square foot home he rented from the state senator "littered with trash and feces, missing blinds and shutters, with cracked windows and blackened carpeting,” when he moved out in January. Needless to say, Bryant will not be getting his $4,750 security deposit back.
West was one of several mentors the Dallas Cowboys assembled to help Bryant adjust to the realities of fame and wealth. When Bryant got into a physical altercation with his mother in 2012, West served as his lawyer, securing a plea deal that saw the charges dropped after Bryant stayed out of trouble for a year.
West's role in Bryant's life has decreased with Bryant's move to Jay-Z's Roc Nation firm for representation. Kim Miale, Bryant's agent, also helped Bryant during the move-out process, according to correspondence in the court file. Miale did not respond to a request for comment.
After being notified of Bryant's intent to move out, West offered to walk through the property with Bryant. When West showed up, he says, no one from team Dez was there to help out. Upon entering the house, West says he found what ended up being almost $17,000 worth of carpet damage — something that clearly wasn't helped by the dogs that Bryant apparently kept in the house, despite a "no pets" clause in his lease.
According to West, Bryant has made no effort to remedy his destruction of the property, which West is currently unable to rent out.
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Things are getting ugly between the two men as their lawyers traded threatening letters. "In May, Mr. West again contacted Mr. Bryant’s representative to request reimbursement of the costs, which Mr. Bryant had promised to provide under the lease," the suit says. Two days later, West received a letter from separate counsel on behalf of Bryant. That letter implied that Bryant would seek to file a separate and unrelated lawsuit against West "should Mr. West pursue collection of the costs of repair any further...The allegations made in the letter were vague, unfounded, and clearly intended as retaliatory."
West is suing for cash damages for the repair to the property, in addition to attorney's fees and any potential rent that West loses as the property is repaired.