Sunday, July 06, 2008

Chaperone Pays for Cheerleader's Death

You all recall the case.

A cheerleading squad went to an event. One of the cheerleaders died. The chaperone was sued and was forced to pay $690K+.

Heard the rest of the story?

18-year-old Lauren Crossan, captain of the Randolph (New Jersey) High School cheerleading squad on a trip to the Hula Bowl, plunged naked to her death from a ninth-floor hotel balcony in Maui in 2004. Police arrested two California men who were staying in the hotel room, but then decided that the death was an alcohol-related accident–Crossan had a BAC of 0.17. (The men told police that they fell asleep while Crossan was still in the room after one had sex with her, and didn’t know what happened to her. Police say there was no evidence of sexual contact or of a struggle.)

This was, Crossan’s parents decided, the fault of Hyatt and of Susanne Sadler, the mother of one of the cheerleaders on the Hula Bowl trip, who was allegedly acting as a chaperone for Crossan. The Hyatt suit was “resolved”; an arbitrator awarded $690,000 against Ms. Sadler–reduced from $1.15 million, because the adult Crossan was held 40% responsible for her decision to get drunk, go to a 20-year-old’s room, strip off her clothes, and do whatever it was that led her to fatally invoke the law of gravity

Even worse than you thought, folks.

HT: OverLawyered