What happened during Gwyneth Paltrow’s first day in court?
The ‘Sliding Doors’ actress alleged that it was the 72-year-old who hit her, not the other way around.
Gwyneth Paltrow made her first appearance in court Tuesday, day one of an eight-day trial, where it was claimed that the actress was distracted by one of her children while on a ski slope, and crashed into a 72-year-old causing permanent brain injury.
The 2016 ski incident
Sanderson’s case against the Oscar award-winning actress stems from an incident that dates back to 2016 at Flagstaff Mountain on the beginner-friendly slope Bandana Run in Utah, when her daughter Apple was 11, and her son Moses was nine.
The 50-year-old actress and her 52-year-old husband, Brad Falchuk, along with their two children, now 18 and 16, will all testify in court at the trial in Park City, Utah.
Gwyneth Paltrow’s lawsuit
Sanderson’s lawyer, Lawrence Buhler, argued in court that it was Paltrow’s “conscious disregard for people” that led to the crash.
“She knew what she was doing was dangerous and she knew it was reckless,” Buhler said in his opening statement Tuesday.
According to the accusation, Paltrow responded to one of her children crying for her to look, yelling “Mommy, Mommy watch me ski,” without looking at oncoming traffic.
Paltrow allegedly turned to watch her child and collided with retired optometrist Terry Sanderson, leaving him with a permanent brain injury.
“They go to the left,” the attorney illustrated, “Gwyneth Paltrow goes to the right. She looks up to see her children and as she looks down, she screams.
“She skis into the back of Terry Sanderson, Sanderson is face down in the snow unconscious.”
Buhler continued that Paltrow was skiing “recklessly” when she hit Sanderson.
“She knew that if she continued to ski that way,” the attorney said, “if she kept looking up to the side, someone would get seriously hurt.”
The defendant’s claim
Meanwhile, Paltrow’s lawyer, Stephen Owens alleged that Sanderson had brain issues before the accident occurred, and ergo, Paltrow carried no blame.
He added that the mountains have special meaning to the ‘Royal Tenenbaums’ actress, whose father took her skiing as a child before he died, highlighting Paltrow’s “sentimental feelings” about skiing.
“[Paltrow was] freaked out,” Owens said about the crash, emphasizing that Sanderson’s skis were between her feet when the two crashed and fell.
“We think this is BS,” Owens added about the claim that Sanderson was seriously injured at Paltrow’s hand, asserting that it was Sanderson that bumped into her, and noting that the 72-year-old had said he was okay at the time.
Dr. Terry Sanderson is seeking damages of more than $3.1 million, claiming that the accident caused “permanent traumatic brain injury, four broken ribs, pain, suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress and disfigurement.”