As is their right, Tracy Morgan and the fellow victims of the June crash on the New Jersey Turnpike that killed comedian James McNair and critically injured several others sued Walmart, whose truck was the one that crashed into them. And, as happens with these lawsuits, Walmart is fighting Morgan and Co.’s accusations, responding yesterday in New Jersey federal court.
But, damn. Telling the guy who almost died that this is basically all his fault is cold, even for a huge coporation like Walmart.
In their reply, Walmart claims that all the victims’ injuries “were caused, in whole or in part, by plaintiffs' failure to properly wear an appropriate available seatbelt restraint device” and that “By failing to exercise ordinary care in making use of available seatbelts, upon information and belief, plaintiffs acted unreasonably and in disregard of plaintiffs' own best interests.”
While this legal clash was inevitable, it’s not going to do much for Walmart’s reputation. They have pretty much been convicted in the court of public opinion, and the longer this battle goes on the worse it’s going to look for them.
UPDATE: Morgan has responded to Walmart's court filing, issuing the following statement today through his rep Lewis Kay:
"After I heard what Walmart said in court I felt I had to speak out. I can’t believe Walmart is blaming me for an accident that they caused. My friends and I were doing nothing wrong. I want to thank my fans for sticking with me during this difficult time. I love you all. I’m fighting hard every day to get back."