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Lions team president Rod Wood told ESPN Saturday the club followed the law in how it handled the hiring of coach Matt Patricia, who was indicted, but not tried, for an alleged sexual assault in 1996.

"We always err on the side of hiring a firm who understands all the laws, follows them, state and federal," Wood told ESPN on Saturday, "so that we don't happen upon something that we're not entitled to have nor would we be able to use."

Patricia was the subject of a standard pre-employment background check, which did not disclose the indictment, the Lions said in a joint statement released last week.

Since the incident occurred 22 years ago, it likely would not have appeared in pre-employment background screening since the Fair Credit Reporting Act does not allow felony arrests that did not result in convictions beyond seven years old to be considered in possible employment.