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After a weekend and holiday to review a full week of back-and-forth between WWE’s attorneys and the attorneys for Vito LoGrasso and Evan Singleton, judge Vanessa L. Bryant issued a four-paragraph order Tuesday in the U.S. District Court of Connecticut regarding aspects of the concussion litigation.
Judge Bryant granted one of the motions set for by the LoGrasso/Singleton camp (plaintiffs) and denied other motions. Included was Judge Bryant ordering that WWE (defendant) comply with a request to provide documentation in a specific area.
Judge Bryant said WWE is “under an obligation to disclose such documents” that pertains to whether WWE had “knowledge of a link between wrestling activity and permanent degenerative neurological conditions.”
Judge Bryant noted in her order: “The sole remaining claim (from the Plaintiffs) concerns an allegation of fraudulent non-disclosure of knowledge of a link between wrestling activity and permanent degenerative neurological conditions.
“To the extent there are documents within the categories identified by Plaintiffs Motion to Compel, including documents related to the use of helmets, the elimination of wrestling moves, the implementation of the Wellness program, or the hiring of specific personnel and the adoption of specific protocol, or the incidences of concussions among WWE talent which reflect a specific knowledge of OR an appreciable risk of a link between wrestling activity and permanent degenerative neurological conditions, then WWE is under an obligation to disclose such documents,” Judge Bryant wrote. (The above text was bolded in the ruling.)
However, Judge Bryant denied the Plaintiff’s requests for additional cooperation from WWE pertaining to “concussion prevention.” She set the parameters that LoGrasso/Singleton cannot request documents that relate to common injuries as part of the job.
“To the extent information within the identified categories merely reflects a general desire to limit or prevent head injury to WWE talent, or the occurrence of head injuries among WWE talent, such information is irrelevant to the claim at hand and is not discoverable,” she ruled.
Judge Bryant also denied two motions to obtain documents prior to 2005 and the medical records of Big Vito and Singleton.
“Plaintiffs have not presented any factual predicate whatsoever entitling them to discover documents or information dated prior to the year 2005 and absent such a factual predicate Plaintiffs motion to compel is denied on that issue,” Judge Bryant ruled.
“Lastly, Plaintiffs demand for WWE to disclose Plaintiffs own medical files is denied in as much as it seeks production of information within Plaintiffs control and access and permissibly gathered by WWE at Defendants own expense.”
The deadline for discovery was scheduled for Wednesday (June 1), which is also when WWE personnel were scheduled to be disposed. Judge Bryant noted at the end of the order that both parties have two weeks to provide additional documentation showing they have complied with the court order.
“The Court will permit the parties to supplement their discovery responses no later than fourteen days after the discovery deadline to provide the information they have each been compelled to disclose,” Judge Bryant closed the ruling.
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