The wife of the man who died after Marion "Suge" Knight allegedly plowed over him in a pickup truck during filming of "Straight Outta Compton" has filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the former rap impresario and key figures involved in the film, including Dr. Dre and Ice Cube.
Lillian Carter alleges in a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court that the Jan. 29 death of her husband, Terry Carter, was a preventable tragedy resulting from negligence on the part of Universal Studios -- the distributor of "Straight Outta Compton" -- along with Dre and Ice Cube.
The suit alleges that Universal and others involved in the film knew of longstanding tension between Knight and Dre, who together co-founded Death Row Records, but allowed the film to move forward, even after Knight objected to his portrayal in the film.
Universal is also accused of negligently hiring Cle "Bone" Sloan, an advisor to the film who helped smooth over relations with gang members in Compton, allowing the film to be shot there. Universal, Dre and Ice Cube knew that Sloan had been feuding with Knight, the suit alleges.
A quarrel between Knight and Sloan precipitated Carter's death in the Tam's Burger parking lot, according to the complaint. Sloan, 51, was also struck by the pickup truck, knocked unconscious and injured in the head and legs.
The lawsuit blames Universal, Dre, Ice Cube and others for allowing production to continue in Compton in areas prone to crime.
"Reckless corporate greed, disguised as the quest for authenticity, led to a foreseeable altercation that resulted in the death of a successful businessman named Terry Carter," according to the complaint, which seeks unspecified damages.
Carl E. Douglas, one of the attorneys representing Lillian Carter and her two adult daughters, who are also plaintiffs in the suit, said: "They were all aware of Suge's violent past and his propensity for violence. We allege it was foreseeable that some confrontation would occur.
The suit also names the owner of the pickup truck driven by Knight, who allegedly lacked a driver's license at the time of Carter's death, and faults the owner with negligently entrusting her car to Knight.
Universal Studios and a representative for Ice Cube could not be reached for comment. Howard E. King, a longtime attorney representing Dre, could not be reached for comment. In response to the suit, Knight's attorney, Thomas Mesereau, told the Los Angeles Times: "Mr. Knight denies any liability whatsoever. He was defending himself at all times."
Knight is currently being held in a Los Angeles County jail and has pleaded not guilty to a murder charge in Carter's death.
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