I’m relieved that Bryan Stow, the former paramedic and
Stow will probably never get a dime from the two criminals who assaulted him. What money he ever gets will come from the Dodgers. Former owner
The Dodgers' attorney reminded the jury that the sympathy they would most certainly feel for Bryan Stow—how could anyone not feel it—was not evidence of the Dodgers' or Frank McCourt's negligence. Of course. So much of the trial went back and forth over security and whether there were enough uniformed police officers in the stadium and in the parking lots and why the security people on duty in the lot didn't make it out there before all hell broke loose.
The Dodgers' lawyers also reminded the jurors that Stow, a San Francisco fan wearing Giants gear, had been drinking heavily that day and, according to a witness, may have yelled at the Dodgers fans who had been taunting Stow and his friends throughout the game. But being drunk and talking back to the people who've been harassing you does not hold you liable for inciting those rival fans into beating you into a brain-damaged, wheelchair-dependent, catheter-wearing man who will require round-the-clock care for the rest of his life.
Which brings me back to why I'm relieved Stow won his settlement. I always thought the Dodgers should have settled instead of dragging Stow, not to mention themselves, through a trial that brought back to mind some of the gloomiest days in recent history for the Dodgers—a time of a disillusioned fan base and low attendance at games, reviled owners who lavishly pampered themselves but skimped on the Dodger payroll, and, worst of all, a time of an unsettling atmosphere of drunken violence in the stadium.
For a while there, the level of intimidation and rowdiness, fueled by alcohol and epic sports rivalries, was turning Dodger Stadium and the area around it into a dark place. The pastoral game of baseball where people sat around and waited for something to happen on the field seemed to be a quaint scenario of the past. Fans fretted about bringing their young children to the stadium. Even without the rowdiness, it's a more turbo-charged atmosphere with louder music.
The Dodgers have been under new ownership for two years now. And even before the Guggenheim Partners took over in 2012, in the wake of the Stow beating, security was beefed up and the flow of alcohol was tightened up. It's still a challenge to control a crowd of nearly 60,000 on opening day.
Good. But Bryan Stow was always a reminder of how horrific the level of senseless violence could be at a
Instead they all went to court, and now there's a monetary judgment. I would suggest that the honorable thing for the Dodgers to do now is pay it and not appeal.