Sportscaster Erin Andrews testified Monday that she will forever be haunted by a secretly recorded video posted online showing her naked in a hotel room, but an attorney on Tuesday suggested it hadn't hurt her career.
"You have done very well in your career since 2009," said attorney Marc Dedman, who is representing the man who shot the video and the Nashville Marriott where it was taken. "You have thrived in your career since 2009."
Andrews is seeking $75 million in damages from the man behind the video, Michael Barrett, who pleaded guilty to criminal charges related to its making. The Nashville Marriott is also named in the suit; Andrews has said the hotel allowed Barrett to request the room next to hers without notifying her.
On Tuesday Andrews continued her testimony on how the video has affected her, and how she expects it will continue to do so. An expert earlier in the trial testified it had been viewed 16.8 million times.
Seven years later, Andrews said she still gets tweets and nasty messages about it. She said she fears how she will explain it to her future children and her grandchildren.
"This will always be there," she said. "There will always be a reminder every single day."
Since Barrett was released from jail, Andrews said, she has sought counseling. She said she has slowly come to terms with the fact that she will need some type of counseling or other treatment for the rest of her life.
"I know I’m not fine," she said. "And that is something I struggle with, because I’ve always been the independent woman in the male-dominated industry."
She described the precautions she now takes when traveling, including checking air conditioner vents, alarm clocks, and bathrooms in hotel rooms for cameras. Feelings of humiliation and anxiety have persisted, she said, and she has difficulty trusting people, which has affected her romantic relationships.
Her current boyfriend, professional hockey player Jarrett Stoll, is supportive and encourages her to look ahead, Andrews said.
"It’s just not that simple," she said. "I feel sad because I think he would have loved the girl more who was there before this happened. And I feel very guilty about that."
She is a role model for young women interested in sports, she said, and the video has also impacted that.
"I think what really hits home for me and hurts me the worst is when girls, high school, college, they tweet me and say, 'I want to be Erin Andrews — except for the Marriott stalker thing,'" she said.
Defense attorney Dedman questioned Andrews whether anyone actually looks down upon her for being the victim of a crime.
"Don’t you think there are people in this world who actually think higher of you because of the way you have handled this?" he said.
Dedman also pointed to the contracts Andrews has negotiated with ESPN and her current employer, Fox Sports. He noted she has become a host on Dancing With The Stars, endorsed products, appeared in commercials, and hosted the 2015 CMT Music Awards.
"Your income has gone up substantially since this occurred," he said.