Former USC football player can move forward with lawsuit against school, doctors
Damaged future as NFL player
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—A former USC defensive end can move forward with most of the allegations in his lawsuit against the school that claims team doctors gave him painkillers that caused a heart attack and damaged his future potential as an NFL player, a judge ruled today.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Yvette Palazuelos said there were enough details in Armond Armstead’s complaint to support for now his allegations of fraud and negligence.
She also said his lawyers can file within 20 days an amended complaint clarifying how USC purportedly interfered with Armstead’s economic prospects as a professional player, his emotional stress claim and how team physician Dr. James Tibone allegedly battered him.
Palazuelos dismissed the suit’s products liability allegations.
Armstead filed his suit last Aug. 30. It alleges that Tibone and other USC doctors irresponsibly treated Armstead while he played for the Trojans, requiring him to take the painkilling drug Toradol several times without informing him of the possible side effects.
Armstead’s lawyers maintain Tibone battered Armstead by giving him Toradol “without limitation” and “without his informed consent.”
The suit—which also names Tibone and University Park Health Center—alleges that USC knew Armstead suffered a heart attack and purposely withheld that he had received Toradol from his doctors. Attorney Robert Bale, on behalf of Armstead, told Palazuelos that USC officials knew Toradol was inherently dangerous to administer to Armstead.
“It’s really not a lot different from steroids,” Bale said. “It made him feel like Superman, that he was invincible.”
According to Bale, Toradol is not used for medical reasons, but instead to keep injured players playing instead of recuperating.
“It keeps injured players on the field to benefit USC financially,” he said.
Armstead was given an ultimatum regarding the drug, Bale said.
“If you don’t get this shot, you don’t play, and if you don’t play, you don’t get scouted, and if you’re not scouted, you don’t play in the NFL,” Bale said.
Armstead had wanted since childhood to play in the NFL, Bale said.
“This was his goal, his dream, his desire,” Bale said.
But USC attorney Louis Pappas disputed Bale’s characterization of Toradol.
“Toradol is a safe drug,” he said.
Armstead, 22, played three seasons for USC from 2008-10, starting 17 games and recording 59 tackles.
He was not medically cleared to play for the Trojans in 2011 because of a training incident.
Armstead was not taken in the draft, but played last season with the Grey Cup-winning Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. The Argonauts released him in January and that same month he signed with the New England Patriots. He is listed on the team roster as a defensive tackle.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Former USC defensive end Armond Armstead won some legal points today as a judge ruled in his favor in his lawsuit alleging team doctors gave him painkillers that caused a heart attack and damaged his potential as an NFL player.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Yvette Palazuelos said Armstead’s complaint included enough specifics to support, for now, his allegations of battery, medical negligence and negligent infliction of emotional distress against Dr. James Tibone and University Park Health Center.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — A Black Los Angeles police officer who said he endured racially related pranks and comments from his supervisor and others in the Central Division was today awarded $1.2 million in damages for emotional distress.
A Los Angeles Superior Court jury deliberated for less than a day before finding in favor of Officer Earl Wright, a 23-year LAPD veteran who alleged a hostile work environment and supervisor harassment.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — A Black Los Angeles police officer is entitled to up to $2 million in damages for emotional distress he suffered while enduring racially related pranks and comments from his supervisor and others in the Central Division, the veteran lawman’s attorney told a jury today.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Paris Jackson, the 14-year-old daughter of Michael Jackson, is being questioned Thursday about her father’s last days as part of her family’s wrongful death lawsuit against a concert promoter.
In addition, Jackson lawyers told the judge in a court filing this week they were concerned that lawyers for AEG Live, the company accused of liability in Jackson’s death, were “behaving aggressively and erratically” in their questioning of the Jackson children.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—An attorney representing people in three Los Angeles council districts accused city officials today of illegally using race as the basis for redrawing council district lines.
Leo Terrell, who is Black, said the redrawn boundaries were created to strengthen the Black voting bloc in the 10th District represented by Council President Herb Wesson, while carving Koreatown into several different districts, effectively diluting the voting power of the predominantly Asian neighborhood.