Dannon cuts ties with Panthers quarterback Cam Newton following news conference backlash


    FILE - ABC News has confirmed, Dannon has cut ties with Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton after Newton laughed at a female reporter's question during Wednesday's news conference, making light of her asking a football question. (AP Photo/Bob Leverone)

    ABC News has confirmed, Dannon has cut ties with Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton after Newton laughed at a female reporter's question during Wednesday's news conference, making light of her asking a football question.

    In a statement released to ABC News, Dannon said, "We are shocked and disheartened at the behavior and comments of Cam Newton towards Jourdan Rodrigue, which we perceive as sexist and disparaging to all women. It is entirely inconsistent with our commitment to fostering equality and inclusion in every workplace. It's simply not ok to belittle anyone based on gender. We have shared our concerns with Cam and will no longer work with him." - Michael Neuwirth, senior director of external communications for Dannon.

    When Charlotte Observer reporter Jourdan Rodrigue asked Newton about wide receiver Devin Funchess' route running, the former league MVP smiled and said, "it's funny to hear a female talk about routes. It's funny."

    In a statement to The Charlotte Observer, Rodrigue said that Newton did not apologize when they spoke after the news conference.

    She said she "was dismayed by his response, which not only belittled me but countless other women before me and beside me who work in similar jobs. I sought Mr. Newton out as he left the locker room a few minutes later. He did not apologize for his comments."

    On Twitter, Rodrigue went on to say, "I don't think it's 'funny' to be female and talk about routes. "I think it's my job."

    A team spokesman says Newton has "expressed regret" for his response to the question.

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