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Student files lawsuit against former athlete

CW Staff

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Attorney James D. Smith filed a civil action lawsuit on behalf of University of Alabama student Connor McKenna against former UA defensive lineman Wilson Love on Sunday, March 9.

The lawsuit was filed two days before the statute of limitations would have prevented McKenna from filing one.

“A civil lawsuit was filed against Wilson Love, a recent University of Alabama graduate and a former University of Alabama football player, over something that was supposed to have happened in California while they were on spring break,” Love’s attorney Robert Prince said in an official statement. “The fact Mr. McKenna waited almost two years to file these allegations against Wilson speaks to their lack of merit.”

(See also “Mitchell receives suspension from team for conduct“)

Smith said it isn’t unusual to wait so long before filing a lawsuit.

“We had tried to negotiate and work something out and just were not able to do that,” Smith said.

The lawsuit calls for compensation of $100,000 for injuries sustained to McKenna on or about March 11, 2012.

McKenna and Love, members of UA fraternity Sigma Alpha Epsilon, were on spring break and stayed in the same hotel room at The Hotel Erwin in Los Angeles, Calif., according to the lawsuit.

The suit states that the two went out with another student, Thomas Brennen, returned to the hotel, and upon returning, Love assaulted McKenna with his fists.

McKenna was taken to Marina Del Rey Hospital by ambulance after hotel employees found him locked outside of the shared hotel room, according to the lawsuit.

Medical bills of upwards of $14,000 for surgery on McKenna’s nose and teeth and room charges of $1,721 as a result of the incident are listed in the lawsuit.

(See also “Sigma Chi, football player named in lawsuit“)

McKenna’s suit said Love initially took responsibility for the alleged assault and indicated that he and his parents would pay the bills but has since denied responsibility and refused to pay.

Contact was made between Smith, Love and Prince before this lawsuit was filed, Smith said.

“As we all know, a person can include almost anything in his allegations in an effort to draw public attention or get a quick settlement, whether the allegations are true or not,” Prince said. “However, proving these unsupported assertions will be another matter entirely.”

The University of Alabama athletics department confirmed that Love was not on the roster when the lawsuit was filed. Love graduated in December and was on the team for the 2014 Allstate Sugar Bowl.

The lawsuit claims assault and battery and wantonness on behalf of Love.

“We plan on vigorously defending Wilson against these spurious charges, beginning with the filing of a Motion to Dismiss on his behalf within the next 30 days,” Prince said.

(See also “Sororities deny lawsuit involvement“)

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Student files lawsuit against former athlete