Man says 49ers draft pick Dre Greenlaw saved his daughter from potential assault

Shortly after the 49ers selected Arkansas linebacker Dre Greenlaw in the fifth round of the 2019 NFL Draft on Saturday, a man wrote in a viral thread of tweets that the 49ers’ new linebacker once saved his daughter from a potential sexual assault in college.

Twitter user Gerry Dales said that Greenlaw knew his daughter from high school, and encountered her at a party during her freshman year at the University of Arkansas.

“She knew very few people at the party, and also didn’t have a ton of experience drinking,” Dales wrote. “Someone slipped something into her drink when she wasn’t paying attention.”

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Dales later wrote that a guy was “all over” his daughter and tried to escort her out the door, but Greenlaw stopped him and said “she’s not going anywhere.”

“He was a starter on the Razorbacks,” Dales wrote of Greenlaw. “His place was not secure. He was underage and at a kegger. He wasn’t drinking, but if there was a fight he was risking getting thrown off the team. In some ways, he was risking everything.”

According to Dales, no one knew who the man that tried to leave with his daughter was, and no one saw him ever again.

“I didn’t ever tell this story, because maybe someone would say, ‘Oh, he shouldn’t have been at that party,'” he wrote. “Maybe not. But he had my daughter’s back, and for that I will always owe him.”

The thread of tweets was retweeted over 7,000 times and liked over 23,000 times. After the thread went viral, Greenlaw told People magazine he was “just looking out for” Dales’ daughter when he saw her.

“I just know I instantly stopped having fun and paid her my full attention,” he told the magazine. “People were trying to get at her, but I called her friend and stood with her until she came.

“She wasn’t in the best state, and at first, maybe I thought she was drunk, but then she told me she needed help and that somebody might have put something in her cup, then I realized she really needed help.”

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Greenlaw was a four-year starter and team captain at Arkansas and had 80 tackles and two sacks in 2019.

The former Razorback projects to back up Kwon Alexander and Fred Warner at the Mike and Will linebacker positions.

Eric Ting is an SFGATE staff writer. Email him at eric.ting@sfgate.com and follow him on Twitter

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