Jerry Richardson gives up control of Panthers as ugly allegations come to light

The swift downfall of Panthers owner Jerry Richardson continued on Monday as the team announced that the 81-year-old will no longer be in charge of Carolina's day-to-day operations. 

It's been a hectic 72 hours for the Panthers and that all started on Friday when the team announced that Richardson was being investigated for alleged workplace misconduct. Although the Panthers didn't reveal what the specific allegations were against Richardson, a detailed report from Sports Illustrated on Sunday shed some light on what Richardson was facing. 

In the story from SI, the magazine reported that several Panthers had complained about Richardson over a variety of things. Among them, Richardson allegedly inappropriately touched female employees and asked women whether or not he could shave their legs. He would also allegedly offer to give them foot rubs. 

Richardson also allegedly used a racial slur against at least a former team scout who's no longer with the Panthers. According to SI, Richardson's actions forced the Panthers into financial settlements with at least four former employees, which prevent them from talking about the details of the allegations against the team's owner. 

Shortly after the Panthers beat the Packers 31-24 on Sunday, Richardson announced that he would be selling the team at the end of the season

With Richardson no longer handling day-to-day operations, full control of the team will go to Chief Operating Officer Tina Becker. 

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Tina Becker will now be handling day-to-day operations for the Panthers. Special to CBSSports.com

"These have been some of the most difficult days of my 19 years with the Panthers, but I am lifted up by the strong resolve and the commitment our employees have shown to this organization," Becker said in a statement. "Our team on the field is performing at a very high level, and I believe is bound for the Super Bowl. My immediate focus will be to ensure the corporate side of the organization performs at the same high level, while addressing the real concerns that have been raised in recent days."

Richardson has been the team's owner since October 1993 when the NFL awarded the city of Charlotte an expansion franchise. The Panthers' first season came two years later in 1995. Richardson also played in the NFL for two seasons with the Baltimore Colts in 1959 and '60.

CBS Sports Writer

John Breech has been at CBS Sports since July 2011 and currently spends most of his time writing about the NFL. He's believed to be one of only three people in the world who thinks that Andy Dalton will... Full Bio

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