It is the kind of scandal that has all of America's favorite ingredients, sex, lies, and recorded evidence. But between the gravity of the situation, and the level of the key players involved, the scandal gets more confusing every day. Who is telling the truth in the Donald Sterling scandal? The L.A. Times has revealed some startling information on May 22 that sheds some new light and puts a timeline on the entire scandal. The L. A. Times report also exposes some texts from the alleged mistress in question, V. Stiviano that are being speculated as the texts that started it all.
The timeline the L.A. Times is reporting suggests that this entire scandal came to light when the relationship between Donald Sterling and V. Stiviano was strained by the lawsuit Rochelle Sterling filed on V. Stiviano. As reported yesterday by the Toronto Relationships Examiner, at the time that Mrs. Sterling filed the lawsuit against V. Stiviano, she alleged in the filing that Donald Sterling and V. Stiviano were still together.
Before meeting and working for Donald Sterling, V. Stiviano was a food truck worker in Boyle Heights. At the time that Rochelle Stirling filed a lawsuit against V.Stiviano in March 2014, V. Stiviano was working for and allegedly dating Donald Sterling, living in a 1.8 million dollar home that he purchased for her, and driving the red Ferrari that he also purchased for her.
The L.A. Times reports that six days after Rochelle Sterling filed the lawsuit against her, which also put a lien on the home that Donald Sterling purchased for V. Stiviano, all of the additional perks V. Stiviano had become accustomed to stopped as well. A text exchange between V. Stiviano and a Clippers employee would be the start of the chain of events that would lead to an audiotape making the airwaves and decimating the life and reputation of Donald Sterling.
On April 9, a Clippers employee sent a text to V. Stiviano cutting her off of her participation and attendance at Clippers games.
The texts began:
Clippers Employee: "Hi V, can you please call me when you have a chance?"
V. Stiviano: "No. I'll see you at the game."
Clippers Employee: "Actually that is what I wanted to talk to you about. Per my conversation with Mr. Sterling, the tickets that were loaned to you have been sold for tonight. Please note this includes any accompanying parking, credentials, and hospitality. As I'm sure you are aware, tonight is a sold out and very important game and unfortunately we will not be able to help you with any accommodations. Please feel free to give me a call if you have any questions."
V. Stiviano: "I'll be there tonight."
"I have tickets and passes for tonight's game thank you…I just want to make sure that Mr.Lee knows what's going on. I would hate for Staple Center to get involve in what's going on. One of the season holder gave me his tickets and passes. But thank you for informing me. I truly appreciated. V. Stiviano"
Clippers Employee: "Mr. Sterling said to let me know if you need anything. We don't want to have any issues at the game."
V. Stiviano: No tell Mr. Sterling that I don't need anything nor do I want anything…but thanks for asking. LET THE GAMES BEGAN…"
Within two minutes that Clippers employee had received a digital copy of the now famous audio file from Stiviano.
The audiotape would then land on the desk of Clippers President Andy Roeser, as well as the lead legal expert for the NBA David B. Anders. Andy Roeser would later say that Sterling "was not worried about the tape". Roeser then told the Clippers employee who had just dealt with Stiviano to delete the material.
It would not be until April 23 when TMZ would contact the Clippers and tell them that they had access to a copy of the audio file, and request a comment from the Clippers. Roeser reportedly spoke with NBA Commissioner that evening to discuss the situation, and the audiotape was published on TMZ the next day by 10 P.M. ET. with the headline "L.A. Clippers Owner to GF: Don't Bring Black People to My Games…Including Magic Johnson."
The next day, Mr. and Mrs. Sterling reportedly developed a public statement together. In that statement, Rochelle Sterling requested that her lawsuit against V. Stiviano get mentioned. The Sterlings also wanted it mentioned that it was possible the recording had been altered.
In a statement that Anders has made on the incident, Donald Sterling's response at the time was to acknowledge some of the comments he made, but to assert that the recording had been doctored, that some of his statements had been taken out of context. Sterling stated that, V. Stiviano "had warned him that she would teach him a lesson if the litigation [from Mrs. Sterling] was not withdrawn".
On April 29, Donald Sterling would be banned from the NBA for life.
On May 2, V. Stiviano would interview with Barbara Walters and tell her that Donald Sterling asked her to "falsely state to the NBA that the voice on the recording was not Mr. Sterling's." She also asserted that she was asked to lie to the NBA about everything, and that Sterling told her if she lied to the world and to the NBA about the recording that he would also make Rochelle's lawsuit go away for Stiviano.
Stiviano told Barbara Walters that Sterling promised to "pay the full value of the claim asserted in the lawsuit…and return the value of that payment to Ms. Stiviano through back channels." V. Stiviano has also appeared on Dr. Phil, where she stated that she never had a relationship with Donald Sterling, and that she does not know why he would say that, or why his wife wants the gifts that he gave her back.
During her interview, Dr. Phil grilled Stiviano on the nature of her relationship with the man she kept referring to as "Mr. Sterling". She relentlessly insisted their relationship was purely professional, that she never had sex with him, that he gave gifts to many employees, and that she had nothing to do with the leaking of the tapes.
Stiviano implied that a friend that she gave the tapes to probably leaked the tape. The "Let the games began" text was not discussed on the Dr. Phil show.
When Dr. Phil repeatedly asked V. Stiviano why Donald Sterling would say she had a "fabulous body" and "loved sex", Stiviano would repeat statements like, "I don't know why he would say that. I'm not in his head. You would have to ask him that."
On May 12, Donald Sterling appeared on CNN with Anderson Cooper and was contrite, sorrowful, and expressed embarrassment over the entire situation. He even told Cooper, "It's not like I don't deserve the punishment" and even alluded to the fact that maybe they [NBA] could have even been harsher.
"I'm embarrassed that I would cause them so much grief." Donald Sterling told Anderson Cooper.
The plot thickens as the L. A. Times reports on May 22 that the level of involvement Shelley Sterling has taken in this case is not at all surprising to those inside the Clippers organization. Many media outlets have reported Rochelle Sterling as Donald Sterling's "estranged wife" but the L. A. times reports this is not the case.
The L.A. Times says that Mrs. Sterling has been quoted several times as saying she is estranged from Donald Sterling, but her attorney confirmed with the L. A. Times on May 22 "she had nothing to do with those statements". The lead investigator Anders for the NBA has also been quoted that "Mrs. Sterling remains inextricably intertwined with Mr. Sterling."
The plot thickens. This scandal is starting to take on the same 'Stand by Your Man' tone as the 1990's scandal known as the Monica Lewinsky Scandal.
Is Mrs. Sterling preparing to take Donald to the cleaners? Or do you think she is going to stand by her man?