Viral Video Woes
When Dekaney High School won the 5A Texas state football championship in December 2011, head coach Alfred "Willie" Amendola was on cloud nine. But he quickly was knocked down a peg when an unmanned golf cart crashed into him at midfield of Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.
One video of the incident has more than 950,000 views on YouTube, and now Amendola is suing the stadium for more than $1 million to cover his personal injuries and family embarrassment.
The suit alleges that videos of the incident distributed by the media caused Willie Amendola and his wife great personal embarrassment and mental anguish.
Amendola's son, Danny, is a wide receiver for the New England Patriots. The Texas Tech grad started his NFL career with the Dallas Cowboys in 2008.
The lawsuit, filed in Dallas District Court on April 9, alleges that "ill-trained, unsupervised and grossly negligent employees" put objects on the floor of the motorized cart that became lodged under the gas pedal.
The cart struck Amendola from behind during a post-game interview with the media. As numerous recordings of the event attest, Amendola was pushed into the driver's seat and briefly steered the cart away from other people before rolling out and onto the field.
"Videos of the incident were distributed by media sources on international, national, state and local television and Internet news sites, causing Coach Amendola and his wife great personal embarrassment and mental anguish, in addition to his considerable physical injuries," according to the suit.
Though not injured herself, Valarie Amendola is also party to the suit, which seeks to hold Cowboys Stadium responsible for its employees' actions.
This isn't the first time Cowboys Stadium has found itself in legal troubles. Jennelle Carrillo of Cleburne filed suit against the team and owner Jerry Jones for "severe buttocks burns" in 2012. Carrillo claimed to have suffered injury, pain, disfigurement and more after sitting on a black marble bench outside of new Cowboys Stadium before a team scrimmage in August 2010.
Days after the 2011 Super Bowl XLV in Arlington, Cowboys Stadium was sued for its role in a seating debacle that left many fans with tickets watching the game on television. A federal judge later dismissed the charges.