Stow Recovery Process Continues to Struggle

Paramedic has 24-hour care a year after he was brutally beaten.


 
 

C.J. LIN, Pasadena Star News | | Tuesday, May 8, 2012


More than a year after he was brutally beaten at the 2011 opening day game between the Dodgers and Giants, Bryan Stow is still struggling to recover from his injuries.

Stow, 43, has since been moved to an undisclosed rehabilitation facility in Northern California, where he receives around-the- clock care as a result of traumatic brain injuries he suffered in the attack.

The Giants fan needs two people to help him with the simplest tasks, according to his lawyer, Thomas Girardi.

"He has to have two people assist him to go to the bathroom, to get out of the bed or go someplace else, to sit, to get him to a place where he can sit on the couch," Girardi said. "So things aren't very good."

And how much more progress he will be able to make is still unclear, Girardi said.

"I think the doctors think he will make some improvement," Girardi said. "But how much and so forth, they get very quiet."

Stow, a former Santa Cruz paramedic, was attacked by two men wearing Dodgers gear in the Dodger Stadium parking lot after the season opener between the two rivals on March 31, 2011. He remained in a coma for three months after the attack.

"Bottom line and without sugarcoating anything, Bryan is far from the old Bryan and each day is a struggle," the family wrote on their website,Support4BryanStow.com .

Police initially named Giovanni Ramirez, 31, of Los Angeles as the suspect in the beating based in part on his resemblance to an artist's sketch of one of the suspects. He was arrested on unrelated parole violations, but never charged in the beating. His name was publicly cleared after authorities instead charged Louie Sanchez, 29, and Marvin Norwood, 31, both of Rialto, with assault, battery and mayhem in the attack.

Stow filed a civil lawsuit in May 2011 against the Dodgers and then-owner Frank McCourt. The suit did not name Sanchez and Norwood, but the two suspects were named in a cross-complaint by the Dodgers saying that if the team were found liable, they should share in paying damages.

Stow's suit alleges negligence, premises liability, negligent hiring, and intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress by the team. It also alleges that the team reduced security measures to save money.

"(Sanchez and Norwood) raised havoc for about half an hour before they attacked Bryan," Girardi said. "All these people yelling for security people, and they were nowhere to be found."

McCourt sold the team recently for $2.2 billion to a group that includes Magic Johnson and a group of investors called Guggenheim Baseball Management.

Still, Stow's attorney argues McCourt is not absolved of liability in the case.

"It goes back to his actions when he was the owner," Girardi said. "And his actions, so far, have been less than exemplary."

The judge presiding over the civil suit said he would not set a trial date until a bankruptcy stay involving several Dodgers entities is lifted, which could be in three or four weeks.

The next hearing is June 29.

The Dodgers declined comment.

Meanwhile, the Giants last month honored Stow by asking him to make the ceremonial first pitch at their season opener against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Stow was unable to make it in person because of his condition, so his 13-year- old son, Tyler, appeared in his stead.

Stow appeared via satellite on the Jumbotron in a wheelchair next to his mother, and extended a baseball toward the camera, saying in slightly slurred speech: "Tyler, here's your ball. Good luck, son," before the boy threw the pitch.

"We will never give up hope that one day Bryan will be able to once again see his beloved Giants play in person," the family wrote. "No matter how rough things get, we will never give up on that dream and we know you all won't either."



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