Lawsuit: X Games director injured woman during brawl
A Chicago woman is suing the executive director of the ESPN X Games for more than $100,000, alleging he tumbled onto her during a bar brawl in Aspen after last year’s event.The lawsuit was filed in district court Monday, less than a week before this year’s Winter X Games begins.Brigitte Larsen says John “Jack” Wienert injured her wrist, neck, back and body “generally” at Jimmy’s An American Restaurant & Bar. The alleged incident happened early Feb. 2, hours after last year’s Winter X Games had ended, according to the lawsuit.She says she has incurred medical expenses, disability and pain and suffering. Larsen is seeking a jury trial.The case was investigated as a disorderly conduct case and is considered open but inactive. Wienert was not arrested. An incident report by Aspen police officer John Rushing says he met Larsen at Aspen Valley Hospital at 3 a.m. Feb. 2.”Larsen had initially said that she wanted to talk to her attorney first but then asked to speak with me,” the report says. “I saw that Larsen had a brace on her left wrist and ice applied.”She told Rushing that “a male she knows only as Jack started fighting with someone else in the bar, several people became involved, and she was injured by Jack.”Larsen, in the report, alleges she was pulled down by someone in the fight, and then “Jack fell on top of her. Larsen said that Jack hit her in the right shoulder/neck area with a closed fist and that it was painful.” Several people then toppled onto her, injuring her wrist, the report says. She told police she initially thought the alleged punch was unintentional “but later said she thought Jack hit her intentionally.”The report indicates Larsen changed her story about whether she left immediately after being pulled from the ruckus.”Larsen then became angry with me and said that she felt I was interrogating her,” Rushing wrote.When he first spoke with her, Larsen said she wanted Wienert arrested, the report says. “But throughout the conversation [she] made comments that she did not want to pursue the investigation, and that she was from out of town and did not want to cause any problems.”Attempts by Aspen police to contact Larsen in Chicago were unsuccessful. The report describes her as uncooperative.Another police officer talked with Wienert at Jimmy’s; he said he wanted to speak with his attorney before answering questions, the report says.ESPN spokesman Josh Krulewitz would not comment about whether Wienert would fight the allegation. Wienert did not return a message left at his Los Angeles office, nor did Larsen at her Chicago home. Larsen’s lawyer, Paul Gertz of Basalt, also did not return a message.In a statement after the lawsuit was filed, ESPN said, “Jack joined us in 1994 to help launch the X Games and has played an important role in its growth ever since.”An online biography says Wienert is in charge of the Winter X Games, which have been in Aspen for the past four years. He is also in charge of the Summer X Games, X Games Global Championship and the International X Games.Chad Abraham’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
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Aspen School District’s younger students will return to class next week, but that’s not the case for those in the seventh through 12th grade, who will continue to take courses from home.