BY MARC FREEMAN
A wrongful death lawsuit no longer targets golf superstar Tiger Woods, concerning a claim against a South Florida restaurant that bears his name.
Woods’ lawyers announced the development on Monday. That followed a court filing Friday by attorneys for the estate of a bartender who crashed and died, reportedly after leaving the business one night last December.
But the month-old lawsuit by the parents of Nicholas Immesberger continues, for now, against both The Woods Jupiter, and Woods’ girlfriend, Erica Herman, who serves as its general manager.
The golfer invests in, but doesn’t own the place, according to his counsel.
“The decision was clearly appropriate and reflected the fact that Mr. Woods should not have been included in the lawsuit in the first place because he had nothing to do with Mr. Immesberger’s death,” Woods’ attorney Barry Postman wrote in a statement.
“While the situation was tragic, the facts will ultimately show that the cause of Mr. Immesberger’s car accident were the many decisions made by Mr. Immesberger on the night of his passing,” Postman said.
Doesn’t own it
In a pleading filed June 5, Woods’ legal team accused the other side of making improper legal claims “in a rush to sue a public figure.”
“There is no factual or legal basis for naming Mr. Woods as a defendant in this lawsuit,” the lawyers wrote. “Mr. Woods does not work at or own the restaurant nor was he present on the day of the accident.”
Spencer Kuvin, an attorney for the estate, could not be immediately reached Monday.
According to the lawsuit, Immesberger suffered from alcoholism that his co-workers knew all about.
The estate claims that on Dec. 10, Immesberger drank at the bar for three hours after finishing a shift, and then got behind the wheel of a 1999 Chevy Corvette.
While driving north on Federal Highway in Martin County, he lost control of the car, crashed and was killed.
Immesberger had a blood-alcohol level of .256, or more than three times the 0.08 legal limit to drive.
The lawsuit contends that The Woods carelessly ignored Immesberger’s drinking problem and “fueled it by over-serving him alcohol to the point of severe intoxication and then sending him out to his car to drive home.”
Mary Katherine Belowsky, Immesberger’s mother, told reporters the establishment “failed” her son.