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Posted On: December 14, 2012

MA Judge Allows Lawsuit to Move Forward on Gillette Stadium Fatal Crash

A MA judge has allowed a lawsuit to proceed against the Kraft Group and other companies affiliated with Gillette Stadium.

The lawsuit is the result of a crash that killed Debra Davis, 20 of Milton and Alexa Latteo, 19 of Mansfield, and injured 24-year-old Nina Houlihan. The three women were ordered to leave the Gillette stadium parking lot after they had been drinking there for five hours during the New England Country Music Festival on July 26, 2008. Their vehicle later crashed into a tree approximately a mile from the stadium.

Norfolk County Superior Court Judge Patrick Brady ruled that companies responsible for parking and security at Gillette stadium have a duty of reasonable care to patrons on their property, even if the patrons are acting in a risky and illegal manner. Judge Brady said it was foreseeable that teenagers not intending to enter the concert would drink excessively on the premises. He added that security did not properly look for underage drinking or ensure that customers in the parking lot had tickets.

Judge Brady’s decision will permit a jury to determine whether the Kraft companies are liable for the women’s deaths and injuries.

Houlihan and Davis’ family are suing the Kraft group and several affiliated entities, with Houlihan seeking $250,000 in damages and the Davis family asking for at least $2.5 million, said their lawyer, Joseph C. Borsellino.

Borsellino argued that the companies failed to properly supervise the parking lot where underage drinking was happening. “The venues for sports and entertainment have always thought they were insulated from liability,” he said. “This decision says, no, if you’re in the business of profit making and you’re selling space on your property, you have an obligation to make that property safe.”

An attorney for the defendants argued that the Kraft Group and affiliated companies should not be responsible for the accident because the women were engaged in criminal activity and trespassing since they lacked tickets for the event. Signs posted at the stadium indicate that only ticket holders may be in the parking lot, said the defendants’ attorneys.

The defendant companies FXP LLC, TeamOps LLC, and NPS LLC had filed motions for summary judgment that would have dismissed the case, but Judge Brady denied the motions.

MA Personal Injury Attorneys

At Altman & Altman,LLP our MA parking lot injury attorneys understand the tragic harm that can occur when a property is inadequately supervised. If you have been injured on the property of a business, private individual or government entity, you may be entitled to compensation. Please contact us at 617-492-3000 or by email for a free case evaluation with one of our experienced personal injury attorneys.


Sources:

Judge rules for families in Gillette drinking deaths, WCVB.com, December 7, 2012

Judge green-lights lawsuit against the Kraft Group after fatal accident, Boston.com, December 8, 2012