Recently, a wrongful death lawsuit was filed against race car driver Tony Stewart. Although the loss of life was tragic, this is going to be a tough case for the family to win. If you saw the news clip, it appears that the young man got out of his car on the race track and walked towards Stewart’s car as it was coming down the track. Apparently, the young man was mad at Stewart for the way he was racing. Regardless, I really believe a jury will have a hard time finding that Stewart is more to blame for the tragedy than the young man who got out of his car and walked towards the oncoming race car.
According to this lawsuit, car driver Kevin Ward Jr. was hit and killed by Tony Stewart on August 9, 2014 during a sprint car race at Canandaigua Motorsports Park. Ward got out of his car after it hit the wall and walked down the track toward Stewart’s car during the caution when he was hit and killed. On September 24th 2014 a grand jury ruled that Stewart would not face criminal charges and Stewart stated that “I know 100 percent in my heart and my mind that I did not do anything wrong.”
This lawsuit alleges that Stewart “wrongfully caused Mr. Ward’s death by acting with wanton, reckless and malicious intent and negligence.” The lawsuit also states that, “As Stewart’s car approached Ward, who was standing on the track, Stewart climbed up, gunned his engine, causing his 700-horsepower vehicle to slide and strike Ward with his right rear tire, crushing Ward and flinging his body an estimated 25 feet down the track.” The lawsuit goes on to claim that Stewart could have easily acted more reasonably and avoided hitting Ward just like all the other drivers did when the passed Ward during the yellow caution flag warning. The Ward family, which is seeking punitive damages, has requested a jury trial. The lawsuit does not specify the amount of damages the family seeks. Stewart-Haas Racing had no comment.