Law & Policy: Civil Actions
WWE Wrestlers Cite Scripted Matches in Concussion Suit
by Jeremy Roebuck; Inquirer Staff Writer January 2015
Years of "chair shots," "flying head butts," "facebreakers," and "cobra clutch slams" have left former professional wrestlers with long-term brain injuries to which the sport's dominant circuit has continuously turned a blind eye, two ex-wrestlers allege in a proposed class-action suit filed in Philadelphia.
Former NCAA Chair Admits to Not Reading Freeh Report
by Emily Attwood January 2015
According to new court documents released this week, former NCAA executive committee chair and Oregon State president Ed Ray did not read the Freeh report before sanctioning Penn State’s football program. The report was the primary piece of evidence used by the NCAA to hand down sanctions.
The revelation comes from court documents filed as part of the Paterno lawsuit, Ray admitted to only reading the executive summary and press accounts. From the documents:
Paterno family attorney Wick Sollers: You reviewed the Freeh Report at or about the time it came out, I take it.
Ray: Actually, it was -- I think I did not go through the detailed report until after the agreement was reached. Remember, the report came out on the 12th. I went to Hawaii on, I don't know, the 14th. So, I may have looked at the executive summary when it came out, and certainly read press accounts, but I don't believe I read or was able to download and get a copy of the full report until after I got back, which would have been around the time of the press conference [announcing the Consent Decree], or sometime shortly thereafter.
Sollers: Did not have the Freeh Report sent out to you in Hawaii?
Ray: No. No.
Sollers: Do you recall when you got back--
Ray: So let me be clear about that. When I went to Hawaii, I didn't even know that we were going to be having any conversations about the Freeh Report. So I had no sense that I needed to prep for anything.
We went on either the 14th or the 15th, at this point I can't remember. And then we had this conference call on the 17th. So no, I didn't have the Freeh Report.
And then I came back on, I think the 19th or 20th, traveling from there, probably on the 20th, and then the 21st we had this phone call [approving the Consent Decree]. So I didn't have a lot of time to prep for anything.
"These are extraordinary circumstances," Ray said at a news conference announcing the sanctions. "The executive committee has the authority to act on behalf of the entire association in extraordinary circumstances. And we have chosen to exercise that authority.
The NCAA has been under increasing criticism as of late for its handling of the Sandusky scandal, especially with new information coming to light as part of the lawsuit filed against the NCAA by the Paterno family.
The scrutiny has also prompted a meeting of the Penn State board of trustees to discuss joining a lawsuit filed by state senators set for trial next month. The board is meeting today (January 16) to discuss and vote on a resolution to join the suit, which alleges that the NCAA had no authority to hand down its punishments.
Penn State Board of Trustees to Debate NCAA Lawsuit
by Susan Snyder; Inquirer Staff Writer January 2015
Pennsylvania State University's board of trustees will debate today whether to join a lawsuit against the NCAA, which sanctioned the university in the aftermath of the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal, a board member said Thursday.
Youth Football Coach Convicted of Sexual Assaults
by Mark Fazlollah; Inquirer Staff Writer January 2015
After two hours of deliberations, a Common Pleas Court jury Thursday found a 25-year-old Philadelphia youth football coach guilty of sexually assaulting five boys ages 8 to 10 and a 21-year-old disabled man.
Lawsuit Alleges Conspiracy in Student's Gym Mat Death
by Christian Boone; Staff January 2015
Lawyers for the parents of the Valdosta teen whose body was found two years ago in a rolled-up gym mat have for the first time identified the two brothers they say killed their son.
Plaintiffs Gain Edge in Penn State Lawsuit
by Rachel Axon, @RachelAxon, USA TODAY Sports January 2015
Settlement talks between the NCAA and plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging the validity of the association's consent decree with Penn State have been on hold for weeks but might get a kick-start after a federal court ruling Tuesday.
Superintendent Resigns; Rape Probe Charges Dropped
by Associated Press January 2015
A school superintendent accused of misleading authorities investigating the rape of a girl by two high school football players resigned from the district, prompting prosecutors to drop the charges.
Boston Olympic Bid Brings Fear of Eminent Domain Use
by RICHARD WEIR January 2015
Should Boston ultimately be tapped to host the 2024 Summer Games, the use of eminent domain will be a tempting option to help clear prized land for Olympic venues, but deploying it, warns a legal expert, could cause disastrous ripple effects with lasting economic harm.
Ex-Student Gets More Than 6 Years in FAMU Hazing Death
by Stephen Hudak and Jeff Weiner; Orlando Sentinel January 2015
A judge on Friday sentenced Dante Martin to 77 months - more than six years - in prison for the 2011 hazing death of FAMU drum major Robert Champion.
Oregon, Coach Sued Over Transfer's Assault History
by Michael Gaio January 2015
A University of Oregon student is suing the school and head basketball coach Dana Altman contending the school knowingly admitted a transfer student with a previous record of sexual assault. The student reported in March 2014 that she was raped by three Oregon basketball players.