Norfolk County Superior Court Judge Patrick Brady ruled last Friday the lawsuit against New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft involving the deaths of two women in 2008 following a car crash after a Country Music Festival concert at Gillette Stadium can go to trial.
Parents of Debra Davis appeared in Dedham District Court on Nov. 20 claiming Kraft and his companies are "partly responsible" for the death of their daughter and one of their daughter's friends following a car crash after the 2008 New England Country Music Festival at Gillette Stadium, according to 7News.
Davis and her friend, Alexa Latteo, were reportedly tailgating "all day" prior to the 2008 Country Music Festival without tickets to the conert. The two girls, along with their friend, Nina Houlihan, left the Gillette Stadium area intoxicated when Latteo's vehicle crashed into a tree. Latteo and Davis were killed while Houlihan surived.
Lawyers for the victims' families said in court on November 20 that as the owner of Gillette Stadium, Kraft "is responsible for their actions," according to 7News.
Lawyers representing Kraft appeared in court last week to ask the judge to dismiss the case entirely, according to 7News.
“On the day of the accident, there’s no dispute that they illegally transported and possessed alcohol and ultimately abused it on the property,” said Douglas Fox, Kraft’s attorney via 7News.
Kraft’s lawyer told the judge no one in the parking lot served or sold alcohol to anyone who was tailgating while Davis' lawyer said event security did not do enough to address drinking outside the event.
In court last Friday, Brady ruled in favor of the victims' families, citing the "Kraft companies in charge of parking and security at Gillette Stadium have a duty to reasonable care of the patrons on their premises, including when the patrons are engaged in risky and illegal activity that contributes to injury or death," according to a report in WCVB Channel 5.
To read WCVB's story in its entirety, click here.
The court's ruling means the lawsuit will be presented to a jury, which will then decide if Kraft and his companies are legally responsible for the 2008 tragedy.
Davis' family is seeking $2.5 million in damages and wants the case to go before a jury, according to 7News. Nina Houlihan, a friend of both victims who survived the 2008 crash, told 7News the three women had been "drinking all day" before she climbed into Latteo’s car with Debra Davis, and crashed into a tree, according to 7News. Houlihan is seeking $500,000 in damages.
To read 7News' article in its entirety, click here.