Junior Seauís family files wrongful death lawsuit against NFL
A wrongful death lawsuit, filed the family’s lawyers at California Superior Court in San Diego on Wednesday, calls out the NFL for its "acts or omissions" which concealed the risk of brain trauma and diseases due to repeated blows to the head.
Junior Seau died last year at the age of 43, due to self-inflicted gun-shot wounds to the chest. Medical reports indicated Junior Sean suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) as a result of brain trauma likely form the concussions he sustained during a 20-year NFL career. The family alleges that the NFL deliberately ignored or hid evidence that connected brain trauma with long-term cognitive issues.
"While Junior always expected to have aches and pains from his playing days,” the family released in a statement via the Associated Press acknowledging Junior Sean’s struggles with CTE, “none of us ever fathomed that he would suffer a debilitating brain disease that would cause him to leave us too soon.”
"We know this lawsuit will not bring back Junior. But it will send a message that the NFL needs to care for its former players,” continued the statement, “acknowledge its decades of deception on the issue of head injuries and player safety, and make the game safer for future generations."
The Seau family’s lawsuit also accuses the NFL of glorifying the violence and big hits in the sport, where it is deemed “a badge of courage which does not seriously threaten one's health”.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said the league was aware of the lawsuit.
"Our attorneys will review it and respond to the claims appropriately through the court."
Helmet manufacturer Riddell Inc., are also being named as defendant in the family’s lawsuit. Junior Seau’s family claims the Helmet manufacturer Riddell Inc. were "negligent in their design, testing, assembly, manufacture, marketing, and engineering of the helmets" exposing the players to risk of serious head injuries.
A press report in November found that over 3800 players sued the NFL over head trauma with in at least 175 cases, as medical issues due to concussion started making the news. A combined lawsuit of over 100 such cases had also been filed in Philadelphia.
The NFL has previously denied all claims of negligence on raising awareness towards risks of brain trauma.