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Bryan Stow Beating Lawsuit: Dodgers, Attackers to Pay $18M

By Daniel Taylor, Esq. | Last updated on

After deliberating for more than a week, a jury has found the Los Angeles Dodgers partly liable for injuries to Bryan Stow, the San Francisco Giants fan who was nearly beaten to death following an opening day game in 2011.

The Dodgers were found 100 percent liable for Stow's economic damages and 25 percent liable for Stow's pain and suffering, reports the Los Angeles Times. The two men who beat Stow, Louis Sanchez and Marvin Norwood, were each found 37.5 percent liable for pain and suffering. Sanchez and Norwood both pleaded guilty to felony charges earlier this year and were sentenced to eight and four years in prison, respectively.

How much are the Dodgers going to have to pony up?

$18M Verdict

Although Stow had asked for $50 million in damages -- $30 million for past and future medical costs and the rest as punitive damages -- the jury's $18 million award was closer to the team's estimate of Stow's medical costs, which was $6.5 to $11 million. According to his lawyer, Stow's injuries will require round-the-clock care for the rest of his life.

Although the Dodgers were found to be only 25 percent responsible for Stow's pain and suffering, their negligence was determined to be a substantial factor in causing Stow's injuries, reports Reuters. This makes the team fully liable for his economic damages (i.e., medical bills and lost wages), which the jury valued at $14 million.

The team will also be responsible for 25 percent of Stow's pain-and-suffering damages, which the jury valued at $4 million, bringing the team's total liability to $15 million, according to Reuters.

Negligence Liability

In addition to naming the two men who were responsible for the beating, Stow's lawsuit alleged negligence on the part of the Dodgers and the team's owner at the time, Frank McCourt.

Negligence generally requires that someone failed to uphold a duty owed to another person, and that failure was the cause of harm of resulting damages or injuries.

Stow's lawsuit alleged that the Dodgers and McCourt violated their duty to Stow by failing to adequately provide security for those attending baseball games. Under the legal theory of premises liability, those who fail to secure their property can be held liable for injuries that occur to others who may be on it.

Although the team was found partly liable, McCourt was ultimately cleared of any liability in the case.

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