Toots sues Richmond Sports Backers, Venture Richmond for $20M

Posted at 2:06 PM, Aug 26, 2013
and last updated 2013-08-26 17:44:57-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)–Court documents show that reggae musician Frederick “Toots” Hibbert has filed a $20 million lawsuit against Venture Richmond and Metropolitan Richmond Sports Backers Inc. over injuries that occurred when he was hit by a vodka bottle at a Richmond performance.

The suit was filed on the 20th of August.

In early June Hibbert’s lawyers filed a lawsuit against the Henrico County man who stands accused of throwing a vodka bottle at the singer during the May 18 concert performance at Dominion Riverrock.

Court papers indicate that Hibbert, age 67,  was injured when the Grey Goose bottle struck him upside the head, near the end of the show as the group performed the hit “Country Roads.”  [VIDEO: Teen arrested, ‘Toots’ recovering after bottle throwing incident]

 William C. Lewis (Henrico police)

William C. Lewis (Henrico police)

The documents also addresses the question of whether Lewis, 19, was in possession of the vodka bottle, or if he acquired it at the festival.  Concert promoters previously said that a bottle of vodka was missing after inventory was counted.

Lawyers claim in the suit that Lewis was seen consuming alcohol “near the stage where Hibbert was performing.”

The teen, according to the complaint, lobbed the vodka bottle so hard and with such force, that the blow suffered by Hibbert caused a “serious and significant tear to his forehead and face,” and has caused permanent scarring to his face.

Toots Hibbert

Toots Hibbert

Hibbert, who was rushed to the hospital as the concert abruptly ended, required multiple stitches on his forehead.

The complaint charges that the Richmond performance was part of a nationwide tour and the cancellation of other shows, due to the incident, have cost Hibbert significant income.

Hibbert’s injuries left him unable to record, compose compositions or make public appearances, the lawsuit says.

Lewis was released from jail on a $3,500 bond with the stipulation that he enroll in a drug and alcohol treatment program. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that Lewis was enrolled at Radford University but that the school has asked him not to return.

Police are still investigating the incident. This is a developing story….