Judge Awards N.J. Woman $1.4 Million for Injuries Caused By Stage-Diving Performer at Rock Concert
By Dean I. Weitzman, Esq. on February 28th, 2014
A Vorhees, N.J., woman has been awarded $1.4 million in damages by a U.S. District Court judge in Philadelphia for serious injuries that she suffered when she was struck by a stage-diving singer while attending a rock concert at the WXPN’s World Café Live music venue on Feb. 23, 2010.
The woman, Kimberly Myers, now 46, suffered a cracked skull and other injuries when Angelo “Dr. Madd Vibe” Moore, the lead singer of the band, Fishbone, dove from the stage during a song and jumped into the crowd below, falling on top of Myers and other concert-goers at the West Philadelphia venue, according to a Feb. 25 story in The Legal Intelligencer.
Myers “has had severe and persistent medical problems from the injuries she suffered,” according to the report.
The judge in the case, Judge Jan E. DuBois, ruled in favor of Myers after hearing testimony in the trial and ordered Moore and the band’s bassist, John Norwood Fisher, to pay $1.1 million in compensatory damages, the story reported. Moore was also ordered to pay Myers $250,000 in punitive damages.
“Moore, who refused to answer questions at his deposition regarding his use of illicit drugs on the date of the incident in question, intentionally dove from an elevated stage despite knowing that stage diving in and of itself poses a serious risk of harm to audience members,” DuBois wrote in his opinion, according to The Legal Intelligencer. “Further, Moore exhibits little remorse or impetus to change his conduct,” DuBois said. “Moore continues to stage dive at almost every performance and exhibits nothing but apathy … towards his victims, whom he repeatedly characterized, during his deposition, as ‘predators’ out to steal his money.”
The band, Fishbone, “continued to perform as if nothing had happened” just after Myers was injured by Moore’s stage-dive, DuBois wrote in his ruling, according to a Feb. 13 story in The (Camden) Courier-Post.
Myer had previously received injury settlements from another band that played that night, Silverback, and from the University of Pennsylvania, which operates World Café Live, the story reported.
Similar injuries have been received by other concert-goers in the past, and had been sued at least once before over similar conduct, the judge told the court, according to The Courier-Post story.
“Moore testified that every couple of months an ambulance is called to the concert venue,” DuBois wrote in his ruling, the paper reported. “Moore and Fisher also use stage-diving to publicize the band, such as by including stage-diving images on album covers and promotional T-shirts.”
DuBois wrote in his ruling that “Moore’s primary concern when he is stage diving is with own safety and with the potential for what Moore believes to be frivolous lawsuits filed by ‘predators'” who seek money for false injuries, the judge wrote, according to the paper.
Since the incident, Myers now suffers from memory problems, shoulder pain, and autoimmune problems that led to lupus, the paper reported.
In her lawsuit against the band, Myers alleged that Moore jumped off the stage on the night of the concert “without any warning” and dove into the audience near where she was standing, causing her injuries, according to a March 3, 2010 story published by on Philly.com. “The lawsuit charges that Moore did not apologize to Myers and that instead, the band ‘continued its performance as if nothing had happened.'”
Myers’ lawsuit acknowledged that the band had a history of stage-diving, but added that she was not familiar with the band or its performances. “The suit said that World Cafe, however, should have been aware of Moore’s stage-diving past and was liable for Myers’ injuries because the venue should have warned the audience that diving might occur,” the Philly.com story reported.
The incident that left Myers seriously injured is certainly an unusual one when compared to vehicle crashes, workplace injuries and medical malpractice injuries suffered by plaintiffs in typical personal injury cases. But the case underscores the fact that innocent victims are hurt due to the actions or indifference of others in a wide range of incidents in every kind of situation imaginable. And that’s where having a legal team on your side that uncovers every fact to bolster your case and maximize your damage award is key.
We here at MyPhillyLawyer stand ready to assist you with your legal case if you or a loved one is ever seriously injured in a personal injury case anywhere in the United States. We represent the families of victims who die in such tragedies as well, to ensure that their families receive every penny of damages that they are eligible to receive.
Call MyPhillyLawyer at 215-227-2727 or toll-free at 1-866-920-0352 anytime and our experienced, compassionate, aggressive team of attorneys and support staff will be there for you and your family every step of the way as we manage your case through the legal system.