A Wrongful Death: Pleasure Ridge Park High School Football Player Dies Due to Strenuous Practice

Last Updated on: 7th February 2019, 12:54 pm

By: William M. Berman, Attorney at Law

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY – A high school football coach was recently charged with negligent homicide in the death of a student player who collapsed during football practice. A grand jury indicted coach David Jason Stinson following the death of Max Gilpin. The 15-year-old Pleasure Ridge Park High School sophomore had trouble breathing, collapsed and lost consciousness after being pushed too hard during a team practice.  When rushed to the hospital, he was found to have a temperature of 107 degrees. Despite extensive medical efforts, he died three days later. The coach is now being criminally held to answer for his death and the situation raises interesting questions about the responsibilities coaches have for their athletes and just how far coaches can push young students in athletic related practice and competition.

In addition to the criminal charges that have been filed, it is likely that a civil wrongful death lawsuit will follow. The attorneys hired by the parents of Max Gilpin have described the coaches’ conduct during the football practice as inexcusable. According to the family’s attorneys, in addition to causing the conditions that led to the collapse of Max, there was also a lack of urgency including a prolonged delay in seeking medical treatment after he collapsed, which caused further harm.  If proven true, such facts are legally significant in a case alleging negligence and “reckless disregard” against the coach and any others responsible.

While this particular incident happened at the high school level in Kentucky, similar incidents have occurred in various other locations, including in California. Other similar events have involved students at the high school level, college level and even the professional level as evidenced by the death of Minnesota Vikings professional football player Korey Stringer. Under such circumstances where a coach pushes a player to compete to exhaustion under circumstances that prove deadly, an experienced personal injury attorney will be able to evaluate the facts of a given case and determine if a wrongful death case may be warranted against the coaching staff, school officials, or even the school district.  The health and safety of our children need to be placed at the forefront of all; the costs of winning at any level of athletic competition is simply not worth the risk of human life.

William Berman is an attorney at the firm Berman & Riedel, LLP, and has experience working on wrongful death cases and catastrophic personal injury matters.  He can be reached by contacting the firm at (858)350-8855.

About Berman & Riedel, LLP firm managing partner attorney William M. Berman:

Attorney William M. Berman focuses his practice in the areas of catastrophic personal injury, wrongful death and elder abuse and neglect. Strictly a plaintiffs’ dedicated firm, he never represents insurance companies in the defense of claims. Mr. Berman’s firm remains staunchly committed to helping those who have suffered serious injury or loss due the negligence, intentional misconduct or wrongful acts of others.

Mr. Berman has grown his firm to what is considered one of the largest and most successful elder abuse/neglect practices within California. Through his continued successes in handling claims involving nursing home and elder abuse and neglect, Mr. Berman remains a prominent figure in advocating on behalf of this vulnerable class of citizens.

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Attorney Bill Berman

William M. Berman, Esquire
Berman & Riedel, LLP
12264 El Camino Real, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92130
ph: (858) 350-8855
fax: (858) 350-9855
web: www.bermanlawyers.com