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Monday, July 22, 2024 | Back issues
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H.S. Coach Sues Cowboys Stadium Over Video

DALLAS (CN) - A high school football coach who was upended by a runaway golf cart at the Dallas Cowboys' stadium sued the stadium's operator, claiming a video of it that went viral cause him "great personal embarrassment."

Alfred Amendola sued Cowboys Stadium LP in Dallas County Court.

Amendola was run over by a pilotless golf cart at the Texas Class AAAAA state championship in December 2011. The video is still posted on YouTube.

Amendola coached the Dekaney Wildcats to the state championship.

"Immediately after his team winning the championship, while conducting an interview with the media, standing amongst reporters, at mid-field at Cowboys Stadium, Coach Amendola was struck, without warning, by a motorized cart, which employees, ostensibly agents, or agents of defendant and/or its entities, failed to exercise proper control over," the complaint states.

"Videos of the incident confirm that ill-trained, unsupervised and grossly negligent employees, while acting in course and scope of their employment, threw objects into the floor of the motorized cart, which cause the cart to accelerate without manual operation."

The video shows the cart barreling through a small crowd at midfield, striking Amendola from behind and throwing him over the hood and into the passenger seat, where he totters and eventually rolls off.

What appears to be an end zone pylon is lodged between the floorboard and the accelerator. A stadium employee eventually runs alongside, jumps into the cart, removes the pylon and brings the cart to a halt.

"Coach Amendola heroically had the presence of mind to direct the cart, which he briefly controlled, in such a manner that it avoided striking the head or bodies of numerous others who had fallen," the complaint states. "He rolled off the cart when he realized he could not bring it safely to a halt, hitting the stadium floor."

Dekaney High School is unincorporated Harris County in the Spring Independent School District, 220 miles southeast of Dallas and 20 miles northwest of Houston. The school slogan is "Whatever it Takes."

Amendola and his wife seek punitive damages for gross negligence. They are represented by Stephen Estes in Houston.

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