The promoters of a rave where an Anaheim teen died of a drug overdose in 2014 want a judge to dismiss punitive damage allegations from a lawsuit filed by the girl’s mother.
Lawyers for Live Nation Worldwide Inc. filed papers Dec. 21 in Los Angeles Superior Court stating that the plaintiff, Julie Tran, has offered nothing in her lawsuit to show the company acted with “malice” or “despicable content.”
“Instead, plaintiff improperly relies on conclusory language to set forth the allegations in the complaint, which is insufficient to sustain a claim for punitive damages,” according to the defense’s court papers.
The Live Nation attorneys further state that punitive damages can be assessed only when it’s shown an employer had advance knowledge of the unfitness of its workers and retained them without regard for the safety of others.
Tran, the mother of 19-year-old Emily Michelle Tran, filed the lawsuit Aug. 3, alleging there was insufficient security and medical personnel present during the event at the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area. She alleges the promoters had a “willful and conscious disregard” for the safety of her daughter. The suit also names as a defendant security company Staff Pro Inc.
Emily Tran died at an El Monte hospital on April 4, 2014, after attending the Hard Summer electronic music festival. Her mother’s suit states that the teen ingested an unknown quantity of the drug Ecstasy while attending the concert.
The promoters knew or should have known that Ecstasy is commonly taken by rave goers, according to the complaint, but “turned a blind eye to the known risks in order to capitalize on teenagers and young adults who believed they were attending a safe party environment …”
The suit alleges those working at the event failed to “adequately transport” the plaintiff’s daughter to the first aid center, where her condition worsened after she eventually was brought there.
The medical workers also delayed getting the teen to a hospital “where she could receive definitive care and management,” the suit alleges.
Tran believes the emergency staff members were poorly trained and not properly equipped to help her daughter, causing the care given the teen to fall below the proper medical standards, the suit states.
A hearing on the Live Nation motion is scheduled for Feb. 15.