Late player’s mother sues team over deathThe mother of former Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the team Tuesday after exhuming his body so that his brain could be examined for evidence of a degenerative condition linked to repeated concussions.
The lawsuit, filed by Cheryl Shepherd in Jackson County (Missouri) circuit court, alleges Belcher was subjected to “repetitive head trauma,” and that the Chiefs failed to provide adequate medical care before Belcher killed his girlfriend and then committed suicide in December 2012.
Shepherd is seeking a jury trial and judgment “in excess of $15,000 for actual damages, punitive damages, and/or aggravating circumstances, for the cost of this action and for such relief as the court deems fair and reasonable.”
Belcher’s body was exhumed at a cemetery in Bay Shore, New York, at his family’s request earlier this month so that his brain could be studied for chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a degenerative neurological condition. CTE has been linked to multiple concussions.
Shepherd’s lawsuit claims the Chiefs failed to warn her son of the short-term and long-term risks of concussions; failed to identify and remove Belcher from practice or games after sustaining head trauma; failed to educate Belcher about concussions; failed to monitor or treat Belcher for neurological dysfunction; and failed to provide appropriate counseling. AP