TOMMY LEE Wrongful Death Lawsuit To Proceed To Trial Phase

November 30, 2002

The parents of the boy who drowned at Tommy Lee's Malibu home last summer are demanding at least $1,000,000 from the ex-MÖTLEY CRÜE drummer in a wrongful death and negligence lawsuit, according to Celebrity Justice.

A court-ordered mediation, which was to begin at the end of this month, has reportedly fallen through, thereby clearing the way for the lawsuit to proceed to the trial phase.

In the lawsuit, which was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court on Feb. 15, actress Ursula Karven and television producer James Veres claim Lee failed to provide proper supervision for their four-year-old son Daniel during a party at Lee's mansion on Jun. 16, 2001.

The party was being held to celebrate the fifth birthday of Brandon Lee, the son of Tommy and ex-wife of Pamela Anderson.

The suit claims Daniel, who had no swimming experience, and other children were left unsupervised in a swimming pool at Lee's home. It also claims up to 50 unspecified employees of Lee were "focusing their attention on socializing with other employees, friends and bystanders at the party."

According to documents, Ursula Karven and James Veres allege Lee should have "hired and trained those acting in a supervisory capacity." Translation: they feel a lifeguard should have been overseeing the children.

Karvens and Veres are chasing Lee for reimbursement for medical care, funeral expenses, loss of earnings as a result of the incident, and punitive damages for their pain and suffering.

Lee's attorney Philip Weiss counters by saying the parents knew the conditions that existed at Lee's home and that the parents "failed to exercise ordinary" care of their child.

Weiss is no stranger to the legal woes of celebrities. He successfully defended actor Alec Baldwin who was charged with attacking a photographer back in 1995.

Now, standing squarely behind Lee, Weiss says that the parents effort to seek monetary recovery under the circumstances is inappropriate and unwarranted.

The parents did not sue the nanny or the babysitter who oversaw the care of the child that day. Weiss says the couple sees Lee as the "deep pocket" and that's why he was targeted for negligence.

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